I’ve never raised my kids, as well, kids. I’ve raised them as humans, complete from birth little people who had minds and hearts and souls and who could change the world with their wit and intelligence and love. I’ve also not given a single fuck about how other people viewed my parenting.
My kids are now teens and I LOVE the fact that we seldom have a dinner table of just the 5 of us. Most weekends we have the conversation about dinner and what we might need to grab from the super. Usually burgers or something that’s extendable. A few weeks back I calculated we would probably have 8 of us there that night. As dinner approached, we were up to 14 teens plus us… That right there to me is a testament to how we raise our kids. The fact that other people’s kids want to be in our home makes me feel good. We are non judgmental. We’re here to give advice, or support, or not.
I have vivid memories of myself as a younger human. But one thing that I always remember, is that feeling of wanting to be bigger. Of dreaming of the time when I hit 10 (double figures!)… 13 … or 16 …. once I hit “that” milestone” people will not be able to boss me around. I will have a voice. I will be able to do as I please. I will be noticed and valid and a real person in this world.
I’ll be old enough to be taken seriously for my thoughts and feelings. For the incredible strength that lay within me. For the power and love that I held deep inside.
I don’t forget this feeling. It literally takes me back to being 8 or 10 and feeling frustrated with how little I was.
I don’t treat my kids as anything other than whole humans. And that is the difference. They are valid and their thoughts, feelings and opinions are real. I’m here to help guide them to independence and being the best of themselves. Here to give them the love and the tools they need in order to be their whole beautiful selves.
So, listen to the youth of today. Hear them. Take the time to truly acknowledge their opinions, their voices. They are no less valid than any stale, pale, male sitting atop his empire. Or do even better and give them a platform. Help them to be heard. Their future depends on it.
And, if nothing else, remember who you were and the power that you held inside all those years ago. 💜