Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Parents are Funny

I was thinking about our kids tonight and how proud I am of them, and I started thinking about how most parents have this thing in common. I stress MOST because I know not everyone is fortunate in the parents department. Anyway, I was thinking how parents are often proud of the dumbest things their children do. Usually, you're the only one that is amused. I know because I've seen it and done it.

One really good example of this is potty training. Think about it. If you're a parent whose been through this, you're so proud of your kid when he/she finally decides to go on the potty. If you step back and think for a second, it's kind of silly, isn't it? Sweet . . . my kid doesn't poop his pants anymore! or whatever you may celebrate to yourself. It's silly, but I will still be stoked once Jameson decides he is going to stop being stubborn and just go already.

As a teenager, I remember playing club and high school soccer, and thinking how annoying parents can be. Parents can get especially obnoxious when it comes to sports. Everyone wants their kid to be good at something, and dads usually want that something to be a sport. I knew a lot of kids who played soccer mostly because their parents wanted it for them. If you've ever watched ANY high school football or soccer game, you can watch parents fulfilling or hoping to fulfill their sports aspirations through their children. I pray to God that I don't become one of those parents. Of course, I won't deny that I will be ecstatic if any of them chooses a sport I know anything about, namely soccer.

Intelligence - here's another common source of parental pride. I know we all swear up and down that we have the smartest kids in the world. Resisting the urge to compare our children's intelligence to other kids' is a difficult thing to do. I don't know if we want validation or if maybe we think that our kids are smart because we're smart. I can't figure out why so many of us care if our kids are any smarter than the next kid. Maybe we just really don't want to be ordinary. Yes, I think maybe that's it. We don't want to be just like everyone else. We want to be special, so we also want our children to be special. Who knows.

One thing is for sure. We all have our hang-ups. Mine involves all things health and safety - my kids health and safety, that is. Yeah, I would be okay with having a few dummies if it meant they would be healthy dummies. James thinks I obsess about our kids' safety, but I can't help myself.

For example, tonight we had a St. Patrick's Day party at James's aunt's house. At some point in the night, while I am busy with a baby upstairs, Jameson decides he is going to take a fake leprechaun beard and chase a couple of his cousins around the house. I hear the commotion (which had been going for about 5 minutes) and come downstairs to spoil the fun. Did I say that the fake leprechaun beard is attached to a long sturdy plastic handle? Yeah, well, I had images in my head of Jameson tripping and stabbing himself in the face or stomach with this plastic hazard. Okay, he wasn't exactly running with scissors, but not too horribly far from it. I'm pretty sure I felt like a leper at that point because I think everyone else in the room thought I was crazy for spoiling their fun . . . everyone, including James. Go on and admit it the rest of you . . .Amanda? Hannah? Emily?

Anyway, the point is, we all have our neurotic ideas and habits as parents. If you're not a parent yet but plan to be, don't worry. You'll discover yours when you have your children. Don't judge me for mine.

1 comment:

Trike said...

While I totally get the urge you have to protect the children, I think you need to let kids fall down and bonk their heads once in a while. There is such a thing as being over-protective. You definitely don't want fearful momma's boys in 10 years' time, and they're far more resilient than you can imagine. (I've seen James fall on his face more than once, and he's fine. Mostly.)