When my younger daughter was in the eighth grade, she was chosen for one of the leading roles in the one act play for the Fine Arts Festival. I was very proud of her and she was excited to be able to participate in the festival even though it required practice every day after school until 5 p.m. This also meant I would have to stay in town the same length of time as we lived twenty miles away from her school. I really didn’t mind as it gave me time to grade papers. Now for the rest of the story. The day before Thanksgiving as I arrived into town I bumped into the assistant principal. He informed me that practice had been canceled that day and all the students had gone home. He also told me that he had seen my daughter leave in a truck with a tenth grade boy. I saw red! She was forbidden to ride with boys in any vehicle nor is she allowed to date. Being the trusting mother (right) I went to my dad’s house where I always met her thinking she might already be there. Of course she was not. I went in and waited and waited and waited and waited and got angrier and angrier by the second. At five o’clock she sashayed into the house as innocent as can be. “Where have you been? I asked.
“I’ve been at play practice” was her answer.
“Where have you been?” I asked again.
“I told you , Mom, I was at play practice.”
“I am going to ask you once again ‘Where have you been’?”
At this point, she knew that I knew she was lying but she would not back down and said again, “I told you, I was at play practice!” This time with an attitude.
“You did not have play practice today plus you have been riding around with Nathan,” I calmly told her.
“No, I had play practice,” she insisted.
With that I exploded. “How can you stand there and bold face lie to me. You know that I know you are lying yet you still stand there and lie. What is with you? You are grounded for the next month plus no phone. I could see her mind working I will be able to see my friends and talk on the phone when I go to Daddy’s house. So ha ha ha. By the way, you will not be going to your father’s house for the next month either!” With that her face fell. She understood that she was indeed grounded!
This was the longest month of my life. I had her in my arm pit for 30 long days and nights. I was tempted to give her a break but I knew that would defeat the whole objective so I stuck with it. What’s love got to do with it, everything! She also honored her commitment to the one act play. By the way, her school came in first.