The world seems to be such a dark place sometimes, especially recently. With all the bad news, poor human nature and political outlook (I don’t really follow it, but I get the gist), it’s easy to be pessimistic. And I’m the queen of pessimism, although I like to think of myself as a realist.
But then, I look at these little people that we created, and it gives me hope.
Stay with me for a second.
We are creating the future. Amid temper tantrums because the cup lid doesn’t match the base and arguments about brushing teeth – yes, you did it this morning and yes, you have to do it again tonight– I have to remind myself that this is all worth it, even if it’s exhausting. Especially if it’s exhausting.
Every. Single. Time.
I get lost in my head, in the NICU movie, in being envious of other people, in the thoughts of “why did this have to happen to us?” It’s something I’m really trying to work on and honestly, it’s draining. I struggle to remember that I have to live in this hour and this moment. When Avery asks me to tickle her back while we snuggle, I have to remember that that is more important than doing the dishes. When Noah talks about his video games (and talks and talks….and talks), I remind myself that right now, that’s important to him and he really wants to tell me about it, even if I don’t really understand what he’s talking about. If he thinks it’s not important to me, it may translate that he’s not important. There may come a time when he doesn’t want to talk to me about the really big stuff. As afraid as I am of the big stuff (who’s really ever ready for that talk???), I want him to know that I am ALWAYS here for him.
Let’s take a look at Noah. He has the sweetest heart of anyone I have ever met. He is so perceptive of others and their feelings. He is very aware of the medical helicopter that flies over our house sometimes. I caught him looking up at it with a questioning look on his face. I asked him what was wrong. He said, “nothing, I was just wondering if they were flying another baby. I hope they’re okay.” I was telling a friend recently about this and she smiled, and said “he’s either going to be the sweetest man ever, or the most neurotic.”
Wow, that was heavy. She is totally right and it reminded me again that we (as in all parents) are carving these sweet – sometimes salty – kids into the people that are going to rule the world. They may not become the president, but they will be doctors, nurses, teachers, pastors, construction workers, business owners and most importantly, parents.
My kids are amazing. They are the reason I do anything and everything. I want to make sure that they know that. They are more important than the laundry or vacuuming or dishes or ______ (fill in the blank with whatever seems to hold onto your time).
I’m not saying that parents shouldn’t take time for themselves. You can’t spend every minute of every day with your kids and hold onto your sanity. I am a firm believer that you have to be something other than “just” a parent.
But let’s not forget that we are trying to produce responsible, compassionate, good-hearted adults that will eventually run this world that we live in. Let’s build them up so they can lift up others that may need it later. Let’s equip them with all the tools they need to make this train wreck of a world a better place. I want Noah to be a man that others can look up to. I want Avery to be a woman that can lead others in the right direction.
I want them to have strong consciences. I want them to know that Jimmy and I are always their safe place to fall, that we would jump off a cliff for them. I want them to know we’re with them until the wheels fall off, 100%, every time.
The only way they will know that is if we show them. Our actions are SO much stronger than our words.
This is what matters. Today. Right now.
What’s that saying? You don’t have to be perfect to be a perfect parent.