Yesterday, I was reminded of the vulnerability we are subject to as parents. Something as simple as sending your kid to camp or school requires you to surrender your child to a series of what essentially are complete strangers.
I recalled a particular time where my daughter wanted a strip of her hair dyed red. I was reminded of this particular event because the thing that got me thinking about all of this was someone talking about dying her daughter's hair and expressing her own feelings and concerns. I recall similar feelings and concerns, anxiety over whether or not it would turn out okay and what happens if it doesn't, for me, one of my concerns (which stems from both my having been bullied and my daughter having been bullied in the past) was how will my daughter feel if others react poorly to her new look.
When my daughter was small and I was a new, very scared and uncertain parent, was this deep fear of my daughter getting sick or in some situation at school and they were trying to reach me and for some reason, they couldn't. In those days, I would go through cell phone battery power very quickly because it seemed that every 6-12 seconds I was looking at my cell phone to see if her school or camp was trying to reach me, and, ironically, to see if I had battery power (and a signal) to be able to receive an emergency call.
Of course, now with my daughter being a teenager, at 14 and going through puberty, high school, and everything that goes along with that, I am doing my very best to keep it all together and trust that she's gong t0 be all right - but it's not without a nightly plea to God to protect her and help see her through this often confusing period in life safely.
Of all things, this thing that's most, I guess I'll use the word interesting here, is relating all of these moments and emotions to my own experiences at my daughters age and what my parents might have felt and how/why they did what they did.
I forgot to mention, this morning, as my daughter came downstairs for breakfast she asked me with confidence if I would pick her up feminine products at the store - I believe that this is a sign of good parenting on my part.