Me: Hey, I got an email reminder from the library. Your books are due. You need to round them up and we can drop them off on our way to the gym later.
Her: But I am not done with one. Can you renew it for me? (pass potato)
Me: No, but you can renew it online. My card in on my keychain with the account number. (return pass)
Her, after long pause: But I don't know how to do that. (pass attempt #2)
Me: Oh it's easy. You can do it. You've put books on hold before, it's the same process. (return pass)
Her, after attempting to log in online: This isn't working! It is telling me the login or password is incorrect. (pass attempt #3)
Me: Yeah, that has happened to me before too. It's frustrating. You may have to call and ask for help. (return pass)
Her: But it's your account mom. They will know I am not you. (pass attempt #4)
Me: They have never asked for my name, just the account number. It will be fine. (return pass)
Her: I don't know they number! (pass attempt #5)
Me: Well, how do you find a number when you need to call a business? (return pass)
Her: I google it.
Me: Right. Good.
Her, as she is looking up the number: What do I say? (pass attempt #6)
Me: You are 14 sweetie. You can figure out how to explain the situation and ask for help. (return pass)
Her, after a big sigh and about a minute: No one is answering. It just rings and rings. (pass attempt #7)
Me: Maybe there is another number. It doesn't have to be that particular branch. Look around. (return pass)
Several minutes pass as she is on hold via a second number she found online. Meanwhile she is watching Dr. Who on her Ipod.
Me: No one has picked up? Wow. We have to leave for gym in a few minutes. Just giving you a head's up.
Her: Well, what do I do?!? No on is answering! (pass attempt #8)
Me: I guess you can work on it some more tomorrow? (return pass)
The next morning...
Her: Hey Mom can you return my books and renew Specials (the book she is not done with) today while I am at school? (pass attempt #9)
Me: No, but I can take you by the library after school and you can do it. (return pass)
Her, sounding somewhat defeated: All right.
Now, this was frustrating for me. it would have been much faster and easier for me to just renew that darn book for her. But that would have been what was best FOR ME, not for my child, who needs to develop problem solving skills and know how to call a customer service agent when she is 20 and something goes wrong with her debit card. It is like what happens when we help the butterfly out of the cocoon; it's wings do not flex and struggle enough to develop the strength to fly. Instant handicapped butterfly. We have a lot of life-skill handicapped young adults running around out there. I am doing my best to not contribute to their numbers. Even though it takes effort, time, and lots of self-control.