The other day I was speaking with my mom on the phone. We were discussing the various struggles involved in parenting. When our children are younger, we have these ideas of what their future may hold. We parents plan, arrange, make sacrifices, work, discipline, line things up, and generally do anything we can to enable our children to have the best possible advantages for their future. Different families are able to do different things based on finances. But regardless, we imagine our children’s futures turning out bright. Then comes the time when the children, usually teens at this point, begin to make decisions counter to our plans and ideas. They make friends with those of whom we might not approve. They decide to spend their time on things that make us cringe. They develop opinions and ideas we are convinced will lead to their destruction. Mostly they just seem to become strangers to us as they seek find out who they are, separate from us. They want to be their own persons, not extensions of the parents, at this point in their lives. So we adapt our parenting as we watch our children change and become adults.
At some point in the conversation, my mom said, “Parenting certainly isn’t a picnic!”
“That’s for sure,” I responded. “Except for in a picnic you plan, prepare, and pack for a fun event and then the weather and the bugs come along and you have to change or adapt your plans… Maybe parenting IS a picnic!”
How is your picnic going today?