Just before the turn of the century, my wife told me we were having a baby girl.
I broke into a cold sweat (no lie or artistic hyperbole; my wife can verify beads of chilled perspiration on my anxious brow). I had barely gotten used to the reality of becoming a parent, convincing myself of how great it would be to take a son to a ball game, and then this. A girl.
And like a modern Rip Van Winkle, I blinked once and am now preparing for Alexa’s sixteenth birthday party. Yes—2012. Yes—a brand-new millennium. Yes—Facebook, iPhones, and cars that can talk. And yes . . . boys. Although I am not as receptive to them as I was back in the spring of 1996.
The twenty-first century is my reality, and a teenage girl on the cusp of young adulthood has altered my universe. I haven’t found any foolproof steps to survive parenting a teen girl, but I can offer a couple of notions that have come to me on this wild but most excellent adventure:
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