Recently, as I listen to more and more of my friends….oh and I TALK too, a theme of our children’s happiness comes up. And when I say “children” I really mean mini adults as they are all late teens and early 20’s, but to us they will always be our babies. I miss the 4 year old boy who loved me more than anything and thought I was wonderful, and the 6 year old daughter who was always wiser than her years.
My favorite saying has always been “You are only as happy as your saddest child”. We carry our children’s emotions and feelings with us. I swear OUR parents didn’t do this? They were more of the “GOOD LUCK….hope you make something of yourself”. Or my mother’s favorite “If you’re not bleeding, I don’t want to hear about it”. _ ok maybe this was when we were fighting with each other! Or be home when it gets dark!. – seriously who can do that now? We start this pampering at a young age. My one friend is a preschool teacher and she has parents emailing because all the cheese was eaten at snack time and the parent working wouldn’t get more for little Johnny – he could only have the crackers. Mind you this is only a 3 hour class that gets out at noon and they go home and have lunch. This parent is NOT helping her son at all, only trying to give him his every need – wait, make that every WANT. I look back now and realize, WOW, high school is going to kill this mother. If she only knows how easy this “problem” is.!!!
I guess my point is that sometimes we try and make everything so easy and painless for them that they learn very little self reliance and basic COPING skills. Coping is such a great skill. The skill of handling whatever is thrown at you and adjusting and dealing with that issue or problem. It’s easy to cope with something good as you are happy and elated. You can go out and celebrate. Coping with adversity is a much more difficult skill. Rolling with the punches rather than making it a Shakespearian tragedy. And maybe there lies why our parents did a better job at this. They looked at the breakup of the first boyfriend as “Oh it will be fine, there will be other boys”. They NEVER fed into or gave fuel to the insignificant “tragedies”. I ofcoarse was DEVASTATED but FORTUNATELY – she was right….. I did go on to find more….well too many maybe…but that’s another story. I do my best now not to play into the drama or minimize the issue but inform them that it’s TRULY not the end of the world. Yes you are sad, but this too shall pass in time. I think HOPE is a beautiful thing. Here is one good thing I taught my kids – Mother is always right!! Took me a long time to learn that about my mom but I finally realized it in my 20’s. So I have passed that wisdom onto my kids. I think they know it’s true……. Alas, eventually mother does get old and is driving the crazytown bus- and you shouldn’t listen to ANYTHING she says then, but hopefully by then your children will have their own kids to pass on this wisdom.’
Best advice: Life is hard, wear a helmet! As soon as you realize life wasn’t intended to be easy always, but a learning and growth experience, you can downgrade your expectations and you should be good to go!
Thursday will be about HAPPINESS —
ALSO — under food tab — I posted this much requested Artichoke/ goat cheese appetizer – that everyone loves to eat but no one wants to make…..but there are PICTURES for the recipe challenged!