Parenting…

Parenting never ends!

I speak from experience!

As I try to take a back seat to give my children enough elbow room to happen upon themselves I am called back to my primary job with a start,

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“Mum, I want you to tell me whether I am doing the right thing!”  I stop in my tracks and turn around.

“Stop all this, ‘you need to make your own decisions,’” she continues, “I want to hear what you think, I want to know what you would do!”

This statement should have opened the floodgates but all it did was tie my tongue in a series of tiny knots I would need a magnifying glass and an eternity to unravel.

I believe my children should make their own decisions based on who they are…sink or swim.  How else are they going to learn?

As long as the predicament isn’t a matter of life and death I prefer to leave well enough alone…

And they usually give me a wide berth when choosing which path to take.

Until now!

My brain races to remember my philosophy while I was on active parenting duty.

It’s OK to take a wrong turn, falter a little, second guess oneself, fail even.

It’s part and parcel of life.

Making ones own choice and trying new things spawns resiliency, racks up the wisdom points, teaches accountability and strong arms the unsuspecting into taking responsibility.

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Have you ever made bread, or thrown a ball , or sewn on a button or read for the first time with a child?  Truly, who was perfect the first go round?

There’s been many a post mortem on a rock hard loaf of bread or tangled thread in my house.

As the saying goes, if at first you don’t succeed, try, try again.

Not,

If at first you don’t succeed, give up, or wish you were someone else!

Spending an hour a day on my yoga mat I listen to my streaming instructor as she discourages me from looking around at the others in my class to compare asanas.

Fortunately I am the only student in my home-studio and if I creak a bit, or can’t raise my toes off the floor in crow, there’s no neighbour perfectly executing an arm balance or Warrior 2 alongside me while I flail around in a disjointed ballet of limbs akimbo.

When I find my centre and catch sight of the cross on my wall I whisper a prayer of thanks that at least I am able to stand on my own two feet…or not.

“Work with your body,”  I am told.

“Do what you can manage today,”  I am encouraged.

“Don’t worry about how you did yesterday…”  Oh such wise words.

“Don’t wish you were the yogi in front of you…” I avert my gaze from the screen.

So, in answer to my child’s plea to tell her what to do I settle back and listen to her unravel herself.

“I wish I had Mary’s life, she has a steady office job answering phones, a fiancé, chalk board kitchen cabinets and never has to fret about paying rent.”

“Would she enjoy being a barista,

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“working shifts, smiling, happy.  On all day?”  I prod.

“Probably not!  But my friend Lucy has the perfect life, she has a husband who brings her flowers when he stays late at the office,

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“the cutest baby and she only works when she wants to…”

“I’m guessing all you see of her life is on Facebook?”

“Yep, you’re right!  Allison’s parents must have money, they buy her anything she wants, she drives a new car, knows people in high places, gets invited to all the best parties, never has a worry.”

“How can you be so sure?”  I shake my head.

“I can’t be but it seems that way to me.  Should I take that receptionist job at the insurance company or not?”

“What do you think?” I ask.  She groans.

I encourage my children to unwrap themselves.

Sometimes they need close friends and family to help.

Sometimes they need prayer.

Sometimes a listening ear while they work it out for themselves.

Socrates said, ‘The unexamined life is not worth living.’

I say, “Go with who you are!”

“OK,” she concedes, “it really isn’t me, a nine to five office job.  But everyone else seems to have their lives so much more together than me.”

“And who do you think they see when they look at you?”

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She didn’t take the receptionist job.

“Maybe being my cat would be best…” she says with a smile.

“Or Simon’s owl!” I say.

“Or even myself!”

Aha, now there’s a thought!

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1 Comments

ElRay

2016-02-05 15:56:55 Reply

So true, but it’s not easy.

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