For those of you that have children, you've probably heard that your children will be exactly like you - and that your kids will do all of those things you did as a child as a form of payback to what your own mothers had to put up with.
My goodness, that statement is so true!
I don't know how many times I've complained and whined to my own mother about some of the things my kids get up to and all I get is "you did the same thing when you was that age".
Most of the time, we see the similarities during rough times....but what about the good? When do I get to share the good things I did as a child and then have my own children repeat those events? Urm, how about TODAY?
Yesterday, I told you that I had a productive day planned - full of cleaning and clearing and sorting and arranging and using my house as a major piece of work-out equipment. Well, all of that happened....yet I wasn't the one to do it all. DOH!
Before I started yesterday morning, I shared my plans with Peanut. Now, Peanut, she's my mini-me. She looks like me, she acts like me. She believes herself to be "back-up" mom. It's her job (in her mind) to run the roost whenever my back is turned. She's bossy. She's independant. She's sassy. She's sarcastic. When I look at her, I see myself.
Most of the time, it can get on my nerves - because I'm constantly putting out fires between her and Butter. He doesn't want to be bossed around by his sister - who is only 11 months older than he is. He doesn't want her calling the shots, telling him what he needs to do and how to do it....and it all makes him mad and leads to arguments and fights. It's when I'm putting out the fires that my mom chimes in with the "that was you when you was her age".
Yeah, I was the oldest of 6 kids. My parents were gone a lot for work and it was my responsibility to take care of my younger siblings. I was bossy, I get that. I can now see why I was always fighting with my brother who is only 14 months younger than me.... I still think he needed to be bossed around - that boy was and still is trouble!
I digress. So, Peanut shares my "in charge" attitude - but yesterday, she brought out the side of myself that I haven't seen in a long time. After sharing my plans to clean the house, she took it upon herself to start cleaning. I didn't ask her to. I didn't tell her to. She just started cleaning.
While I was in my room cleaning, she was in the kitchen scrubbing counters and the microwave. She cleaned the floors, did all the dishes, rearranged the junk that had piled up in the dining room.
While I was writing my blog post and folding laundry, she was in the living room cleaning away Jelly's toys that were all over the place. She was dusting. She was vacuuming. SHE WAS CLEARING OUT MY GYM AREA!!!
I couldn't believe my eyes when I stepped into the living room. It was as if someone had wound her up and let her go flying around the house with a cleaning rag in her hand.
I explain all of this as though it's the first time Peanut did something like this. It's not. Peanut takes it upon herself each and every day to help out around the house. She gets up early with Jelly on the weekends - without being asked. She cleans the dishes in the evening - without being asked. She often baths Jelly in the evenings - you guessed it, without being asked.
At first, I didn't know if it was right to do a feature post about Peanut. I have three children, and I don't want to single one out above the other. The truth is, though, my Peanut deserves it. My household is no bed of roses. We have had some major issues with Butter - and she has been the target to a lot of his "issues". She is NOT the cause. Yeah, she can be bossy, but that is not the root of the actions that spill from Butter. No matter how much she tries to be nice to him - he pushes her away.
Butter, unfortunately for me, is his bio-dad's Mini-Him. All of the lying, stealing, anger, violence....all repeats of his bio-dad's younger years. I just get to be the one that is punished while he enjoys his life far away somewhere. No, it's not fair, but Butter is MY son - and I will deal with any issues that come my way. I can only hope that I can help before Butter turns in to the good for nothing piece of crap his father is....I won't stop trying EVER.
OK - didn't mean to go off on that rant.
The point is, looking at my daughter reassures me. There have been many times I've doubted my parenting skills. There are times that I've cried myself to sleep from guilt that I don't spend enough time with my kids, or that I'm not doing everything I can for them. I worry that I'm not being the best role model or caregiver or supporter. Then, I look at my Peanut. Yes, there are times when I'm gone too much or I'm too busy or I'm too focused on school work, but at the end of the day I know that what I'm doing will help us all in the long run. I know that no matter what I do or how I do it, my kids will make their own decisions and mistakes - and I just have to be there for them.
Knowing that my daughter is growing up like me? Well, that's not too bad. Despite the mistakes and decisions I made in life - I think I turned out OK. I hope that she decides to take different roads than I took - but no matter what roads she travels....she's going to be just fine because I will be there - always - just like my mom has done for me. Then, one day, when she has kids of her own I can say those wonderful words: "you were just like that when you was that age".
Thanks for listening, today...
Till next time. ;)