When he was little (about 7 or 8) my son came to me and said, “tell me the truth, is Santa REALLY real?”
I wrote it down and dated it because it was the first day my heart actually broke a little. He seemed so sad about it. And we’d always been really open with the kids talking to them about the story of Santa and how the gift of giving was a beautiful thing. But Christmas was of course the story of Jesus and his birthday.
As your kids grow, if you do it right, they make decisions independent of you. I KNOW. Crazy, right?
You’ve spent your entire adult life teaching them either through direct lessons, or by example. Then you send them off into the world (starting at Preschool how scary is that) and as they go out the door you hope YOU PRAY you plead with the universe and the powers that be that they remember everything you taught them, they appreciate your ideals, they take on your beliefs as your own and they are strong.
No big deal.
Every once in a while they take a different path.
It’s almost a grieving process as you think of what you wanted for them and what they chose. We are different people than our children and wouldn’t life be boring if we were all the same? I actually know a little family like that, and they are kind of boring. LOL No one has ever…EVER…accused my family of being boring.
Yes, it’s okay they choose a different road. We don’t have to love it. We’re just on the safer road, right? The lit up interstate with the phones every half mile or so and the state troopers always driving past and the gas stations popping up with “open 24 hours” flashing to reassure you the chance of running out of gas is slim~ that’s the road we’re on. They’re on the secondary highway. The one that says, “last rest area for 160 miles. No facilities”. And it’s dark. And you just know…it’ll be far more adventurous but knowing they’re taking that little shortcut home, you’re going to worry the whole time.
I don’t care what anyone says. Parenting is the hardest job there is. Because it requires every part of us.
Physically, emotionally, spiritually, financially we are 100% invested in these children and not screwing it up. I’ve always said I didn’t work when I was raising my kids because God put me in charge of raising actual people. I didn’t think I could do my best job by splitting my focus. Some people are good at that, I recognize that I’m not. Making sure they become kind, loving, generous people who find success and happiness in their own lives. If Sean and I do it right they will grow in confidence and independence and naturally find the strength to leave us and it will be the right time for all of us.
So far so good.
But that straying from the path thing. It’s a killer on parenting. Just have to say that. Every kid I know does it and it is hard.
Fortunately, at their core they are still amazing beautiful people because hello…they were born awesome, we told them constantly how much they were loved, no matter how they screwed up they were still loved and we weren’t crazy parents who gave them unreasonable ridiculous punishments. Those parents kill me. Really. Read a book People.
So today I’m grateful for my kids. Just grateful. I’m a lucky parent. Even though parenting may kill me. I’m pretty freaking lucky.
That is all.
And a bonus one. Because I couldn’t decide.
I think I waited too long to get on the treadmill. Sean beat me to it and now I’m falling asleep at the table. 🙁
Better planning must be in order if we both are going to be using the machine. Good thing I love him.