Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Good Parents

So, over here we were discussing all of the things we would never do as parents. I for one have never notgiven in to whining and such things, nor have I eaten candy while forcing vegetables on the kids. I would be the first to say that I may be the worst parent ever, just ask the teenagers, they'll agree. When it comes to some things anyway.

I was always concerned that my kids were perpetually bruised and scratched, but having seen ER photos of kids who are really bruised and scratched, I know that there is definitely a difference. My kids are at the age where they can wander off to the next room and play. Of course one of them is shrieking right now, is this just trying to get someone else in trouble, or do I need to go check? I've found that when there is blood involved it will find me so that I'm not running to the back of the house every 14 seconds.

There are times when I feel that I'm putting a little too much energy into my current project and neglecting the kids. Of course when neglect hits the radar of the authorities, it's usually because the kids spent the weekend locked in an apartment alone with a remote, 10 sippy cups filled in the fridge and two bags of family sized chips, if they are lucky. I also know that being present does not necessarily mean being present.

I don't read to the kids every single night, I don't bathe them every single day. They don't always get 11 servings of bread, nine servings of fruits or vegetables, one hour of exercise and some days spend too much time in front of the tv. Sometimes they have to wear dirty socks, and mismatched shoes. I loathe the PTA, and soccer. So, does this make me a bad parent?

I sure hope not. My eldest just came home for the weekend from college. She seems to be a functioning adult. If not for the food we are serving here, she might be content to never hang out with us oppressors again. Stark contrast to the other adult children on the block. When we moved into our house six years ago, there were two men living with their parents. One parent quickly told us it was temporary, he's still there, with his kid, who is 11. The other "man" just moved out, but not without stealing all of his parents power tools.

So, I guess I'm at least an ok parent. I won't be winning any awards for being the best, or pretending to be. Who knows what really goes on behind closed doors? But I'm hoping that my children will be functioning members of society when they grow up. I'm hoping that they are healthy about their eating and exercise habits, without being obsessed. I hope they can put the first things first. I hope that I never have to change the locks and install extra security measures to keep them from ripping me off. I guess I won't know if I really am a good parent until I can look back. By then I'll probably Monday morning quarterback the whole thing and see where I went wrong and what I could have done better.

Well, I guess I'll just love them, and do the best I can every day. I'll teach them the things I know. I'll live my life knowing they are watching, and leave the rest of it up to God.

1 comment:

Susie said...

You are an amazing parent Annie, and you will look back one day and smile. You should have commented on my "He Speaks, She Speaks" because this is so what people need to hear.