Saturday, December 19, 2009
I don't know how you do it...
I've heard that one before...more than once.
What exactly is it that people are surprised that I do with "so many" children?
Do they think I run around crazy all day? They look at me like I'm crazy sometimes. lol
Or I'm the personal slave that does all the cooking and cleaning by myself. Or maybe I don't and the house is a mess and the clothes are never clean. Whatever.
The truth is...I don't do it. We do it. We work together as a family.
Some folks, I'm guessing, have the mistaken idea that the parents (in particular, the mom) are the only ones who do anything in the family.
"Let children be children." "They're only a child once; let them enjoy it." True.
But. But. If they are not taught how to be an adult, by adults, they will be children all of their lives. And we all know someone who fits that description.
I read something recently that said don't get involved with your children - get your children involved with you. It sounds the same but there is a difference.
Get them involved in what you are doing. And that doesn't mean to never play with your children. You should play with them. But get them to work with you. And as they grow older their play should decrease as their responsibility increases.
The big mistake I made was in not realizing that a lot sooner. My younger ones love to help me with the laundry. As I take the wet clothes out of the washer, they are standing in front of the dryer helping to push them in. They think they are doing a big job...and they are. They are learning the responsibility of doing laundry.
Don't get me wrong. I don't use my children as slaves. In fact, I have to force myself to let them help me. I would much rather do it myself. I can get it done quicker and easier if I do it myself. But what does that teach them? That they don't have to do anything but play. They get used to that and then when we need them to do something, they moan and complain about it. Because they are not used to doing anything. Does that make any sense?
I'm not even sure why I'm writing this post. I feel like I'm in no position to give advice to anyone. We're still working on a lot of things and I'm still a relatively young mom. But maybe someone out there needs this post. Maybe it will encourage someone; let them know that - hey it can be done!
Until next time...