If you follow me on Twitter or Facebook, you know my family has been full of drama. Specifically, kid-induced drama. One after another they have cycled through, causing us heartache and despair.
But you know what? Just when it seems that I can’t take another minute of this, I get enough strength for another round.
My biggest life lesson so far? If I can make a joke about it and laugh, I can survive it.
My family and friends have been wonderful. I’ve gotten advice, references, laughter, support. I can’t thank them enough.
But the surprising thing has been the unexpected support.
- Coaches who aren’t calling to kick a kid off a team, but to make sure school work can be made up.
- Fellow baseball moms who say the nicest things when they don’t have to.
- Former teachers of the boys coming over to give me a hug and to tell me I’m not a bad parent.
I could go on and on…
Because when your kids cause and/or create drama, you question your parenting abilities. You start to wonder what you did wrong. You question every decision from the most basic to the most elaborate. Automatically, you blame yourself.
I don’t have any answers to the parenting question. Did we parent wrong? Did we parent right? Who knows. But we parented the best we knew how and always admitted that we were learning as we went.
This is what I want other parents to take from my lessons.
Sometimes you do everything right, and things go wrong. Sometimes you parent half-assed, and things go right. There are no right or wrong answers. There are no books that will tell you what your particular kid needs. Every child is different. Every parent/child relationship is different.
I think there is a lot of pressure on parents today to be perfect. Everyone has advice on how to parent, especially those who have never done it! There is a fear of government involvement if we do it wrong. Because of our connected world, we know what other families are doing and what they aren’t doing. We are inundated with articles on raising perfect kids, perfect students, perfect athletes.
Sometimes we just need to give everyone a break and stop trying for perfect. We are an imperfect people living in an imperfect world. Frankly, I’m not going to hide in my house, hoping no one will find out that one kid is in an alternative school (I call it “reform school”) and another is in jail. Yup, that’s our life right now and we are dealing with it.
Life is hard enough without having every person telling us how we should be living it. Stop listening to them and do it your way.
By the way, if you need to vent about something awful happening in your life, email me. Nothing can shock me at this point. I promise not to give you unsolicited advice, but I will be one hell of a cheerleader!