the laid.back Buddhist has MOVED...back!

Tuesday, November 6

I Can Pay For Your Shrink

This morning’s inbox brought in a long email plea for help from my kid sis, who's about to turn 16 in a month (holy crap! she’s reached her sweet 16 already?!).

But I’m only a mere 5 years older than her. I mean, who am I to give her advice on Life when I’m still trying to figure out my own!!!

Oh, boy. I sure hope my advice isn't so off the mark or scarring in the way that causes people to seek therapy to recover later on in life.



First, I’m SO glad Todd is coming back safe from overseas! Do you know if it’s for sure? Mom and I took his class over the summer right before he was deployed (you were at Northwestern). HE IS AWESOME. You’ll probably see an increase in people attending the sports dance class. I swear, that man has the cutest tush ever…and the way he shakes it puts ME to blush! I can’t say if you’ll feel the exact same connection (near impossible when everyone’s different), but he’s an excellent teacher, to boot. So don’t worry, you’ll love him and you’ll learn a lot.

Oh, AND he’s drop-dead gorgeous, tall, great smile, very toned…and in sleeveless cut-off shirts, he looks more like some hot basketball player than a professional dancer/teacher. Babe, I’m so freakin’ envious!!!

Okay, enough gushing from me. Back to the serious topic at hand.

You’re right, it’s never too late. Take your old jie for example. You know from last weekend that I’ve only just figured out some things. It was a long time coming—what you don’t know is that it’s been an idea in the back of mind all these years. I let it marinate, patiently waiting for the right opportunity. Or perhaps, I was simply waiting for me to be ready. Because something can be right and not the right timing. Don’t feel rushed. Opportunities come and go, yes…but half of those opportunities come because we made damn sure they would.

You know Katherine? It reminds me of her wise advice in regards to splurge-shopping: don’t buy it right away but if you find yourself constantly thinking about it over the next couple of days, then that means you really want it. My decision took four years (and counting!) to come into being. So take it easy and just ride it out.

You and I both know that when Mom says “it’s too expensive,” it’s only half-true. We both did fencing at the Academy and got sent off to summer camps for how many years? Exactly.

You are definitely old enough to make your own decisions (though that doesn’t change the fact that you are indeed the baby of the family still!). HOWEVER, one of the reasons mom is opposed is because she may feel that this is a passing phase or that it should just remain a hobby.

Do you remember how Mom and I fought it out during middle/high school when I wanted to try out for the girls’ basketball team? Afraid that I’d be doomed to never grow out of my tomboy-ness phase, she had final word in this matter (as you know is usually the case, haha), but dad secretly asked me on the side if I did try-outs just for kicks. Which meant that if I really wanted to and proved my capability, Dad would’ve championed my cause (like when I joined the volleyball team). In that instance, it turned out that Mom happened to be right—basketball is a purely recreational thing once I realized that one of the main reasons I play is because of how much I enjoy the pick-up games with the guys.

You never know what’s in store for you, and as you get older you do garner a better idea of what your preferences and dreams are. But see, even that is subject to change.

My advice?

The next time you decide to hash it out with Mom, be more prepared than a boy scout. Show her that this is something you are willing to handle, that you CAN handle. Follow-up on those options! These are questions you should be asking Meagel, or ask the manager at our health club if they’d be willing to take Meagel on as full-time staff, etc. And even if in the end things doesn’t work out the way you want to, keep in touch with her because who knows? Maybe your senior year, timing will be right again and you can pursue this passion with Mom’s approval. Or, like you said, at college.

Sure, it seems a long ways away and that you’re losing a one-time opportunity, BUT this could also be the experience that shows you that this is a passion you want to keep up.

And for the record, Life definitely gives you second chances…

You only need to look for ‘em.

Much love, jie.

(jie = Chinese for older sister)

10 Musing(s):

Brent said...

You're such a great older jie


I think it is good advice. I mean it sounds good. :)~

Kyla Bea said...

16 is hard, you're up against everything and so close to being on your own!

Your advice definitely gets my seal of approval, but you have me wondering - do you charge per word or on an hourly basis? ;)

Valley Girl said...

I wish I had a big sis. =(

Joanne said...

Brent: Aww, thanks. I hope she can take it the right way, too. =)

Kyla: Yeah, and my sister gets all indignant when we all treat her like a baby even though she's clearly a girl becoming a young woman. HAHA, I like to barter with with chocolate eclairs! ;)

VG: LOLs,, too!

The Lisa Show said...

That's just sweet. I wish my sister and I had a smaller age gap so we could bond the way you and your sister do. :|

Robin J said...

The greatest gift you can give your sister is for her to know someone cares for the other stuff she is a teenager she will keep what she wants from your advice and dice the rest thats what learning is all about :o)

meleah rebeccah said...

I wish I had you as my older sister growing up! great letter

mcgee said...

wow what a great older sister you are offering such wise and well-written advice!

Katherine said...

you and your "marinating." :) I know I've said it before, but I wish I had an older sister like you when I was growing up (not that I'm not STILL growing up...)

Katana said...

your emails sound th esame as the ones my bestfriend and i share!

Winston Churchill