I am writing this on the eve of a new year, with a room full of 7-10 year old boys sitting in my living room watching “Lost in Space” and eating microwave popcorn. They are completely content.
I suppose I should feel pressure to change something. Maybe I should swear less. Eat healthier. Save a baby whale.
The thing is, I am as content as the boys I now hear giggling and making fun of my “No Drinks on the Carpet” rule. This was not always the case. For years, I battled myself over career options and the value of a homemaker. Once I did become a stay-at-home mom, I felt guilty about not being particularly involved in the kids’ schools. I struggled with the credo of MIND-BODY-SPIRIT in terms of raising kids, and my shortcomings were obvious. Joey thought the crucifix on a First Communion cake was the letter “T.” Danny was lambasted for not being able to do a lay-up. Jack still thinks Paris is a country.
Yet, I know I am succeeding in the job I most wanted. My kids aren’t a-holes. It was the first and foremost objective when Joe and I started our family. No a-holes allowed.
Not that there isn’t time. We all know what’s coming. Raging hormones. The immature prefrontal cortex of the teenage mind. The introduction of alcohol and drugs into their social circles. I’ve done the research and it is terrifying.
But for this one moment in time where all is well and not a single fire rages, I do not seek to change a damn thing. My fatalistic Irish tendency assures me that disaster is long overdue. At that point, and that point only, maybe resolutions and critical self-evaluation will be warranted.
But on this occasion, I choose happiness and celebration.
And I wish you all the same – Happy New Year, Chicago Parent readers!