How to survive a teenager by breathing

Some days, Kids know how to make you scream. Or almost. They make you want to scream. Don't. Instead breathe in, then breathe out. Repeat. If I can get through mother-of-teendom doing this, it will work for you.
My teen lost her wallet. That means, no school ID, no bus pass, no driving permit. Then, she followed that up by losing her glasses. Again. Breathe in, breath out. Repeat.
I decided to go in to work late to get her a replacement permit. She shows up at my room, ready to go. or--(insert sound of screeching car here). Her mouth said she was ready to go to a place of business, but her clothing did not.
She had on shorts that might have been panties, a shirt that bared her midriff, thigh high thick socks and  over the knee boots. Oh, an a hip length sweater over that. Did I mention it is winter? But the boots, they were slamming! Clearly, she got her shoe taste from her mama.
I said, "Darling, we are going to two places of business, followed by lunch at my office. You need to put on something that shows less skin."
I didn't want to be bothered with the because-I-said-so-banter. I took a deep breath. "I couldn't go to work like that, so you will not be going to my office like that."
Okay, she left. Seemed to work.
Five minutes later she shows up again. She has on shorts that actually clear the curve of her ass this time.
Breathe in, breathe out. Repeat.
"Darling. You didn't understand. You have to cover up. That is not appropriate."
"But you thought it was cute."
"I though the parts were cute in the summer. Not together. Sometimes, the whole is not greater than the sum of the parts."
She rolls her eyes, gnashes her teeth, but leaves again.
When she shows up this time, she has on jeans. No holes. The top is still midriff but only barely. Okay, I think I gotta take my small victory. The boots? Still slamming.
I watch her as she models in front of my full length mirror and compliment her on her shoe choice. "I really like those. I might have to snag them from you sometimes."
With a straight face, she says one word. "No."
"Huh? What?" I don't comprehend. Especially since we have an understanding that since she has no job and I bought everything, everything is essentially mine.
"You made me change my clothes, so you can't wear them."
Breathe in, out, in, out, in , out.....


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