Psalm of the Tween’s Mother

I will sing to the Lord, for he hath dealt bountifully with me.

Yea, he hath delivered my soul from the cries of the infant in the night; from sleeplessness  hath he (mostly) redeemed me.  From the toddler’s dangerous curiosity and the three-year-old’s “why” and the five-year-old’s bedwetting he has raised me up.

Therefore I will give thanks unto God among the heathen, in the playgroup will I shew forth his praises.

Remember, O Lord, thy tender mercies and thy lovingkindnesses, for they have been ever of old.   Turn thee unto me and have mercy, for I am brought low, I am made the mother of tweens.

Be merciful unto me, O God; for their mood swings would daily swallow me up.  They are carried away as with a flood, they are like grass that groweth up.  On Tuesday they are green and flourish, for Lindsay loveth them, but on Wednesday they are cut down and wither, for Chelsea layeth a snare for them.

Their mouths are as the tongue of the heathen, for they do say “like” and “whatever” all the day long.  Their tongues are loosed at the rising of the sun, and at noon their words are as the sands of the sea.  In the evening, they talk without cease, and by night they plead for the instruments of speaking through the air, yea, even the phones without wires, that their speaking may be forever.

They laugh me to scorn.  Yea, at the rising of the sun they do roll their eyes, and in the evening they do roll their eyes.  Of the rolling of the eyes there is no end.

Their instruments of war are compassed against me: the round tyres of  Taylor Swift’s singing, the book of the fashions of Delia’s, the moving pictures of Zack and Cody; yea all these are arrayed against me, and my soul is pained within me.

And when I would make my defence, they do smite me with  their giggling; yea, their laughter is sweeter than honey, and my bones melt within me.  Of the sweetness of their kisses when no one is looking, no tongue can tell, nor can any man say how precious are their gawky embraces.

Yea, their thoughts are delightsome, and their spirits within them beautiful as the young hart.  Their joy springeth up speedily and filleth the whole house.

In the night shall I watch tenderly over their sleeping; O Lord, make me to forget the agony of making them arise before the noon of the day.

So teach me to number their days, that I may apply my heart to wisdom.  In thy mercy, O God, let their tween-ness endure a long season. O prepare mercy and truth, which may preserve them. So will I sing praise unto thy name forever.


  1. Like!

  2. Kevin Barney says:

    As night follows day, tween-ness will be followed by teen-ness, so you have yet further layers of the depths of hell to experience. May God’s mercies rest upon you. (Loved the Psalm; especially the British spelling of “defence.”)

  3. Julie M. Smith says:


    Reminds me Frazier’s Lamentations of the Father.

  4. Yeah, Julie, I’m sure that was in the back of my head. Nobody will ever top that, though.

  5. Awesome.

  6. hahahaha. I love this. I’m feeling very grateful for the lack of zack and cody in my life. small joys

  7. Fantastic. I loveth this post.

  8. When my child was a child I lamented him as a child.
    When he became a young man, I put away childish things
    And lamented him as a young man.

  9. Brilliant!

  10. CatherineWO says:

    I am a grandmother of tweens, and all I can say is, you’ve nailed this one. Thank you.

  11. Fabulous. I had my 13 year-old read it and yea, he cracked a smile. If the canon is still open, do consider adding some verses (lamentations?) about tweens on snow days…

  12. That was incredible.

  13. Outstanding.

  14. And so, as thy smitten heart can do no more but give place for the swelling of tweeny tenderness, and as thy tweens continue to multiply in favor and self awareness, take heed and let not the enemy of this land, Justin Bieber, from whom thou has hitherto been spared, enter into thy lair to lay waste to all thy accumulated graces.

  15. I love it!

  16. Martin Willey says:

    I have to go hug my kids (all tweens) now.

  17. I don’t know. I’ll take my 13-year old son any day over the first 3 years of his life. That kid cried ALL THE TIME his first year. He was so fussy and we were so sleep deprived, I will NEVER forget what it was like. It’s a miracle he has 3 younger siblings.

    I just don’t think I’m a baby person. I also prefer Yahtzee to Candyland.

    Very clever though.

  18. Great fun, Kristine. Thanks.

  19. Kristine, you have some pretty lucky tweens to have you as a mom. Have you shown them your psalm?

  20. No, I worry about their eyes rolling so far back in their heads that they could never unroll them :)

  21. Thanks for this, Kristine. I needed the reminder to savor the wonderful aspects of our daughter’s tweenhood. Especially considering what’s around the corner.

  22. StillConfused says:

    I thought that was a really cute and witty post

  23. Stephanie says:

    Love it!

  24. I adore this. I am living it with you.

  25. Jennifer in GA says:

    Bless you! I’m right there with you ….

  26. I dearly loved this…I only have one tweener left; thank goodness he’s a boy so I don’t have to listen to Justin Bieber! I just have to be able to find a lost stylus and buy something from the machine when he comes with me to work!

  27. Fabulous, Kristine. Love the teens, not so much the tweens, though both are giving me grief right now- however, I’ll take this over diapers, inconsolable infants, and all the grief that goes along with the baby/toddler stage any day.

  28. Verily, my heart trembles with fear and longing at the visions conjured of a not-far-distant future.

  29. meggle, I remember us well enough as tweens to be sure that we richly deserve whatever grief we’re getting :) How many Merrie Miss teachers did we run off in a year?

  30. Your cup runneth over.

  31. This enters the canon! Wonderful.

  32. Mommie Dearest says:

    This was a delight to read, especially since all the tweens it references for me are nieces and nephews, and I am not on the front lines anymore.

  33. Kristine, You have been spying on our house! This is an awesomely perfect psalm. My tween daughter now says “whatev” instead of whatever, to make it even more annoying. You are brilliant.

    Did I mention you are brilliant?

  34. I love this, Kristine! I hope you show it to your kids when they’re older, when their eyes won’t roll quite so far back in their heads. They might even laugh with you.

  35. You are wonderful.

  36. How is it that I ALREADY have to endure Zack and Cody? I have the feeling the rest of this is right around the corner for me. Very fun, Kristine!

  37. This is great.

  38. I’m trying to find an adjective that no one else has used yet. Where is my thesaurus? Oh yeah–my tween stole it & took it to school.

    I thoroughly enjoyed this. Now can you write one for those of us who currently have tweens AND toddlers? Between Dora and Zack & Cody, my soul is indeed pained.

  39. Take it from a middle school principal and father of four girls – this is on the mark and all too real.

  40. Brilliant! Brava! Purely bodacious. You pasted a big smile right smack in the middle of my bronchitis-bound day. Thank you!

  41. This is brilliant. Just completely brilliant.

  42. May I print this a put it on the board at church?

  43. n[r]2–yes, of course. Unless it has to go through the Correlation committee :)

  44. Okay, Kris, this is a total thread jack, but I had to recount to my 14 year old daughter this week the woeful tale of the craziness that ensued when we were fourteen, and we were involved in some terrible romantic drama where we both liked the same boy, and his brother liked one (or both) of us, and how it’s just best to stay out of all the drama. :) heh heh. it’s all payback.

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