PARENTS AND CHILDREN (PADRES E HIJOS)
“Children have a strange power over parents, we suffer more from their pain than our pain and we are happy when they are happy”. (Excerpt from the movie “Unauthorized Living”)
Having children is an adventure that throughout life will raise questions and you will even doubt many of them. By becoming parents, we are not going to be measured by what we are giving up by deciding to have children, but by what we are gaining by doing so. There are no formulas for perfect motherhood, and we will make many mistakes along the way, of course! But they will be for lack of experience but not for lack of love for them. When we become parents, we forget a part of us, to give to the most important people – the ones given to e us and care for them for a while. We love our children more than we love ourselves and we give our lives for them. But since they do not come into the world with an instruction manual under our arms, we are used to consider them as part of our possession, Since they are born, we give them almost everything like how to behave , we teach them discipline, safety, health, provide them education, etc… Children are only small once, that is why it is so difficult to tell them “No” when they want to sleep next to us in the same bed, or when they forget some schoolwork at home and call us to take it to them or not allowing us to do the homework for them, they forgot the night before. We must teach them that their mistakes have harsh consequences.
Our children need courageous parents who have the strength to commit themselves to their education no matter how difficult or painful it may be. Nowadays there is a confusion between w being “good” parents and permissive parents. They do not need us to give them everything, because usually the sad result of this great effort would be the opposite of what we expected. Parenting requires maturity above all. This way parents can focus mor on loving their children and they will feel less guilty because they can do everything but not everything at the same time. However, we mothers who work outside the home think that we are neglecting our family or not taking good care of our children. I am sure that we will not become better moms by living, waiting on them or overprotecting our children or fulfilling their whims as a kind of penance.
Let’s stop and think about what it is like to be a child today with busy parents, with no patience, running from one place to another, and tired all the time from so much work?
Or let us also think: When did bad become good? What legacy are we leaving them in this life full of fun and privileges? What would the world be like when they become adults?… For our children to have their feet firmly on this earth we used to give them responsibilities. Unfortunately, today that has changed. Now they are the ones who have the authority, and we obey. We must avoid becoming stressed and exhausted. Raising children is not as exhausting as we think.
Marathon. Worst of all we think we are doing this to ensure their happiness and therefore ours.
Our children need our attention, our presence, and our love, let us cultivate in them a good heart. Let us help them develop their strengths so that they grow and enjoy feeling that they are useful beings, capable of contributing positively to the welfare of the world around them. Let us cultivate in them integrity and conscientiousness, allowing them to grow as kind and correct adults and capable of making important contributions in this society. This is an invaluable legacy since we are helping them to reflect on and/or reevaluate their values, because our time with them is usually a brief unrepeatable magical moment.
How difficult and heartbreaking it is to let them sail alone in an ocean of many storms, but we must give them complete freedom once they grow up. As parents we will feel alone and tears will slide down our cheeks but let us try to remember that we are also the world for someone else, for them… our children…
Notes from Monica Rodriguez
Translation Spanish-English: Natalie Hon