Life tends to throw some strange curves when you least expect it…or is that only me that happens to? I am, by nature, a worry wart. I worry about finances, are there enough groceries, milk? Do the kids have enough clothes to wear? Will I be able to continue getting my son music lessons. I worry about my marriage, am I being a good enough wife? Am I making him happy in every sense of the word…will he stray away from me?
But mostly I worry about how my kids, all my kids, will grow up…how will they turn out? Will they be able to say no to all the pressures this world has to lure them to the “dark side” of life. When I was a kid the worst kind of thing my folks could find is a playboy under my brother’s beds. And as far as I know that never happened. Or, maybe, just maybe they would catch oneof my brothers smoking a cigarette. And man…back in those days that was BIG news in my neck of the woods. Smoking a cigarette was a sure sign of a kid losing their way. Nowadays, A cigarette is the least of our worries.
Now we have marijuana, meth, cocaine, alchohol, and the newest drug in fashion is prescription drugs. Having lupus, I am on many prescription drugs. I carry them in my purse because I never want to leave that temptation open for them. I never remember my folks ever hiding their prescriptions or even worrying about us trying them.
Then there are all the images on TV and in movies that idealized sex, unmarried, uncommitted sex. A parent has to decide “do I provide condoms or the pill just to make sure my kids are safe? Or do I go with the way it really should be and tell them abstinence is the ONLY way to stay safe?” Cuz in reality safe sex does not exist anymore. Along with all the other STD’s in the world we have now added the pressure of the HPV virus that, mostly for girls, could be deadly.
I have girls, and I have boys. All of them have raging hormones. All of them are curious. And all of them love life. I have lived my life believing that God’s grace is leading me through this thing called parenthood, and that I am doing all I can to try to show them the best way, how to make the best choices. But, am I really doing enough?
We have had our share of ups and downs with the teens in this home of ours. We are a very blended mixed bag of personalities, hormones and perceptions of what is right and wrong. We have very strong willed children and we have some very passive easy going kids. Each kid, it seems, has to be handled differently from the next. And it is so hard to keep that balance between one kid being disciplined more then another or the expectations for one child being way higher then another.
I love my children. I love them so so much. I never want to see any of them hurt, or belittled or made to feel as if they are unworthy, not good enough, or loved less then another. Keeping that balance in a large blended family is probably one of the biggest challenges of my life.
I wish there was a way to go back in time, take them to the time when I lived, when things seemed, at least to me, just a bit easier. It was harder to get ahold of “bad” things. Doing things as a family was “cool” not stupid. And respect for adults was not only expected it was enforced. But I can’t.
I guess all I can do, all any of us can do, is to keep believing that God’s grace is the only thing that will get us through these tough teenage years. And then, when they are older and have kids of their own, hopefully they will remember at least some of the things we tried to teach them, and teach the same morals and values to their own kids.
Thats my hope, my dream, and my prayer!