Parenting is a sticky wicket.
You do the absolute best you can with the tools you have from your own experience, and the results are still a bit of a crapshoot. Children, unfortunately, don’t come with guarantees. They don’t turn out like you imagine, they turn out like they turn out, like they’re divinely intended to come out.
Hopefully, you’ve installed enough programming in them that they will be decent, caring, thoughtful creatures and not selfish, ignorant, nasty ones. Hopefully.
I parented in the “I’m proud of my honor student” bumper sticker generation. (I never had one, because we homeschooled, but they were EVERYWHERE.) We wore our pride in our children’s ability to read before their peers, their report cards, their sports achievements, their scholarships, etc., on our bumpers for all the world to see. And judge.
|I homeschooled mine… so, yeah… that’s how that works.|
My children are all ADULTS now.
That’s a tough pill to swallow sometimes, but they are, even when they try to play the guilt card (I know where they picked that up!) and tell me they need me to feed them. Sometimes I wish I could still stuff them into their footie pjs and put them to bed, knowing they are too short to turn the doorknob and escape, but those days are over.
For my own mental health, I’ve had to start referring to them as “my adults” instead of “my kids” because they’re all grown up. It’s a transition.
Do they always make choices I approve of? No.
Do they do dumbass stuff sometimes? Yes.
Do I always agree with them? No.
Do I always love them. YES.
Will I help them if I can? Absolutely.
It’s NOT unhealthy or abnormal or unusual to have kiddos that turn into adults who don’t resemble anything we thought we raised.
What IS unhealthy is to continually strain and strive and struggle to change them, to turn them into something we think they should be, instead of letting them become who they are destined to be.
Parents, let your fledglings fly. Don’t hold them back. Don’t tether them with guilt and fear and all YOUR unresolved baggage. LET THEM FLY.