Wednesday, April 4, 2012

The Worries of Parenthood

One of the “joys” of parenting is constant worrying. When we don’t have to worry about things like food, water, shelter, and health we take it upon ourselves to broaden the spectrum. Is she smart enough? Does he have enough friends? Is she tall enough? Will people like him? The list goes on and on. Now most people who know me know that I’m not a big worrier. That being said, it’s impossible to not let the worry woes enter my mind at some times.  I have three children who are very different from each other so the worries vary.

Isabelle is four years old but is smart beyond her years. She yearns for knowledge. She spends her nights writing her letters, begging me to spell every word possible for her, and nagging us to play number games with her. She remembers everything and articulates things better than most grade schoolers. She will sit and color, paint, or do crafts meticulously for hours. Isabelle is a planner and a rule follower. Sounds perfect, right?  Well I worry that her obsession with right and wrong will lead her to always be the tattle tale. I worry that she’s not easy going enough.  

Henry is three years old and as sweet as they come. He will happily play in the corner with a rock and a paperclip for hours. He lives in a make believe world full of dinosaurs and bad guys. He has an imaginary dog who is also a super hero (“Super Doggy”) who flies next to our car when we are out and about. He is a no muss, no fuss kind of kid. He is also completely clueless. He can’t follow simple directions to save his life. At the rate he’s going, he may never be potty trained. He uses imaginary words that normal people don’t understand. I worry that he spends too much time playing alone. I worry that he will scare potential new friends away by his constant talk about ghosts and monsters. I worry that he’s too laid back and that he doesn’t fight back enough.

Daniel is twenty months old and a bulldozer. He is like Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde. He is charming and sweet one minute and hitting and throwing toys at your head the next. He is smart – smart enough to carefully plan his attacks against his siblings. He is a Mamma’s Boy and a dare devil. I worry that while I am ignoring him on a fussy day that he actually has an ear infection. I worry that each day is the day that he will fall down the entire flight of stairs. I worry that he doesn’t share enough and uses his strength to get his way too often.

Those are just a few of my worries, but really when all is said and done I know that it will work out. I envision Isabelle and another little OCD girl sitting doing long division together while discussing all the naughty things other kids in class did that day. I envision Henry and another little boy wearing capes and running around the backyard chasing ghosts with sticks. I envision Daniel (inevitably with a limb in a cast) with another little boy throwing rocks at trees and planning world domination. Things won’t always be easy. Kids can be mean and childhood can be tough. But when all is said and done, I know they’ll each find one friend who will help them through it all. In the meantime, I’m going to go start collecting resumes from kids at the playground to fill the open positions.

"Don't worry, Mom. We've got this!"

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