Thursday, March 22, 2012
The other night, I met a dad who was grocery shopping with his 6 young children (who looked to be 7 and under) and I felt such a sense of kinship! Normally, when I am out with all the kids, I have lost count of the times strangers stop me to tell me how full my hands are! His kids were so delightful and well behaved and I made sure to acknowledge him as a person and not simply as a parent who had his hands full! During our brief conversation at the checkout stand, he made sure to mention what a blessing children are (and I heartily agreed) and that though his family buys a lot of groceries, God has been good and all their needs are always met. I wanted to shout hallelujah in agreement, but I think I would have scared the clerk! I think navel gazing is so ingrained in the American psyche, we lost sight of the blessings in front of us. Today's parents are the byproduct of the self-esteem focused parenting model where children were raised to think the world revolved around them. Then, when they grew up and became parents and all the sacrifices that entails, that must have been a shock to their systems! No wonder it is so rare to hear parents sharing the joys of parenting, but it is so commonplace to hear parents complaining how hard and tiring parenting is! Our parents had more kids and fewer gadgets to make their lives easier but they seldom wasted precious time lamenting how hard their lives were. To them, we were blessings and they simply got in the trenches and mothered us joyfully.