The everyday, repeat yourself a hundred times, oh my gosh that was my last nerve, is it bed time yet, feeling you have right before you pass out….
Yep, this is parenting.
Gone are the romantic life-notions that it would be fun, and that each moment would be faced enthusiastically, and it would be easy because you had something right and knew something that nobody else knew. (Wait, am I the only one that ever, even for a moment, believed that stuff? I hope not…)
I had a brief moment where I wondered when it made sense, or felt like I was making a difference, or when it was fulfilling and satisfying. I wondered when there was time for my life… and then my boys hugged me and told me they loved me. And I realized, this is my life. It is fulfilling and satisfying – but often times I have to be fast to catch those moments, because they tend to be fleeting.
Parenting makes me question my strengths, my intelligence and pretty much everything else about myself.
And parenting is mundane. It is repetitive. (Have you ever told a teenager to turn down their music before they hurt their ears? I figured once was supposed to be sufficient….but I say it over, and over, and over, and over….you get the point.) Or a six year old to take a bath? Or a four year old to pick up toys?
I thought that once you taught a lesson it stuck. So not true. You teach the same lessons over and over and over and over and….. yep, you got it. In fact, I’m beginning to think that if I sat down and charted it out, I could probably give you a perfectly reasonable list of 5 – 10 things that are the “parent” category for the lessons we truly want to teach our kids. And it is an everyday job, and we have to remind them all of the time about those 5 – 10 things. And that’s all there is to it. (Well, and a little ice cream and a bubble bath for my sanity….or something like that.)
It’s not nearly as simple as it sounds. And it’s annoying to say the same things all the time. And to remind them to use the same manners in the same places all of the time. But guess what I know?
I am grown, and looking back now, I can see why school was important, and I understand the majority of the points my parents were making. And that is the teeny-tiny thread of hope that I hold on to. Because when they are grown, they will remember those things that I repeated a bajillion times. And they will teach them to their children.
Sounds kind of like a romantic life-notion again now that I’m thinking of it…