|In the Waiting Room - Happy New Year|
|Friday, January 04, 2013 2:05 PM|
We have reached the beginning of another new year. It is now time for us to look back on the year we had.
As a nation, we saw the joy in the faces of parents as their children and our Olympic athletes achieved greatness in their chosen sports. The hard work and sacrifice that they and their children put forth culminated in the moment of a lifetime because win or lose, they had achieved the status of Olympic athlete.
We also watched in horror as we heard about the lives of 26 people taken by a man who was armed with more firepower than brainpower. We looked into the faces of all those beautiful children and felt pain for the parents who had to deal with the loss. We held our own children tighter and realized how fragile that bond with our children really is.
Through all the highs and lows, the triumphs and losses, the laughter and the tears, we have learned a little more about parenthood. We started out as rookies in this adventure. We get lots of advice from everyone (both good and bad) and we learn that most of parenting doesn’t come from our head and it certainly doesn’t come from a book. It really comes from our heart.
We are the one person in our child’s life who can be counted on to make decisions for them based on what will benefit them most. For everyone else, ulterior motives are often at stake. Friends want to have fun sometimes at the expense of common sense; coaches want to win a game, sometimes at the expense of health; and siblings want to gain an upper hand, sometimes at their sibling’s expense. But parents just want their child to make the decisions that will keep them healthy, have a successful school experience, and have a happy life. Our children don’t always recognize this in the moment; they see us as obstructions to their goals. It isn’t until later that they recognize that their “goals” were best not met.
When we stop them from jumping off the roof, we are thought of as obstructions to flight, not as protectors of their bones. When we won’t allow them to play X-box until they have finished their homework, we are obstructions to happiness, not saviors of their educational future. Whether we are viewed as “helicopter parents” or “free range parents,” we have the same goal in mind and who’s to say who is right?
Different children require different styles so for our child we both may be right or we both may be wrong. The only thing we can do is our best; as long as we keep trying it will all turn out alright.
Here’s to another year and may you have more happiness than heartbreak and never miss a chance to tell your child how much you love them.