I caught myself doing it again. I blog about stuff, but I try to not show you the real juicy stuff. I graze over my troubles with a dismissive hand gesture. Like no big deal, we all go through it, and then I move onto how I overcame my battle. Ughhhhh.
I was just talking about my one child in my last blog. She was looking at a website. But, I make it sound like everything is ok and I handled it the most adult way possible, but the truth is I get freaked out about my kids. She was on a website called, Talking to Strangers. I was calm-ish about it to her. But, after I felt scared. I didn’t focus on that part in the blog, but I realized that I make it sound that I got it all together. I don’t. My kids scare the hell out of me. All the time.
I have been thinking about that fear I have with raising my children. I think what happens is that my kids screw up and I want them to learn from their mistake immediately even though I know that they won’t. I’ll just tap my foot impatiently until I hope they do. But, the truth is my fear of raising my children also stems from being judged. If I can’t raise them right, everyone will judge me for how they turned out.
The truth is that I am trying to parent them differently. I’m trying to listen and see what is at the bottom of the problem. For my one child, I told her that talking to strangers is not real. You don’t know them. I think she gets lonely and has found entertainment in her ipod and tv. I told her that she needs to get off the internet and start connecting more with her family, friends and her self. I asked her to think about the things she really loves that don’t involve technology. She got out her art supplies. She painted a little canvas of a dancer. You know what painting brought up for her? Her doubts about her ability. So, we talked about the voice inside that criticizes. I asked her, how is it that you already judge yourself for something that you barely do. Practice practice practice. I never got good at anything on my first try. It took time. Playing the game. Paint to canvas.
Am I still scared for her and the other two? Yes, all the time. But, if I only focused on punishing and scaring and my fears projected on them I’d lose the chance to add a new voice in their mind. The voice that says I got this. I’m ok.
Society has plagued us that success, achievements and awards are a true measure of how I have parented. I know kids love getting the awards, but that is just the stuff on the outside. The voice inside has to feel good, kind and compassionate to be able to handle all stresses and not just the good stuff. Society has made me start out raising my children against who they really are. I have to release my expectations and ask myself some serious questions about what I want to accomplish for my self and for them.
I’ll focus on my honesty as well. I have learned to be private. I learned to jump to the conclusion of my story and that all is well now instead of telling the moment that I was face down on the arena floor. The truth is that I am then just like the rest of the people that want to make raising kids sound like pure bliss with a few hiccups along the way. It is not. It is hard sometimes. Oh sure the frequent hugs and kisses and I love you take the sting off the times they lip me off, refuse to do chores and get a failing grade. In the end, making it seem like everything is perfect isn’t what my blog was about. I am looking to share my vulnerabilities, truths and sometimes shame. That’s real and I need to keep it that way.