I am convinced that parenting is about the hardest job one can undertake. I have come to the conclusion that children should be born and live happily with mom and dad until they are about five years old. Then, there should be a Children’s Island or Country or Continent, or Planet where they would be sent. Here they would stay and not be allowed to associate with their parents until they are, oh let’s see….say 45 years old. As you can probably guess, I have not worked out all the details on this idea so I am sure there are some challenges to make it happen. But if you are a parent you know I am making sense.
As I wrote in my blog back on January 7th, children have lousy eyesight. It improves with age, but it takes awhile for them to see things like trash piling up and overflowing in the kitchen and bathroom; they don’t see dirty dishes in the sink and, likewise, don’t see the clean ones in the dishwasher that need putting away (unless, of course, they need just one clean dish immediately for whatever they have stolen out of the fridge that you were especially looking forward to having).
My 14-year-old granddaughter, Haley, is a semi-permanent resident in our house. She took a shower the other morning. After I questioned her about it, she confessed that she got the bathmat all wet because she slipped in the tub and after recovering she discovered that the shower head was shooting water just about everywhere except inside the shower. What she did not tell me was what I discovered two days later. Apparently the flood was much worse than she first confessed. I went into the closet in her room to get a box I needed. I found the box. It was soaking wet. Atop it were three drenched bath towels. Like she didn’t even wring them out a little before she tossed them in the closet. I asked her what was going through her wunderkind mind when she did this…
Me: Why did you stash three soaking wet towels in the closet on top of a box with books in it that proceeded to soak up all the water?
Haley: I don’t know. I didn’t know where else to put them.
Me: Didn’t it occur to you that you could have left them in the tub to drain or, better yet, put them in the washing machine.
Haley. I didn’t think of that. Besides, I didn’t feel like going downstairs.
Ooo-Ooo, I have another thought that just came to me. I think we should be born as fully grown and developed adults. I realized this would be a pretty uncomfortable pregnancy and an excruciating birthing process. But if we plopped out into life full grown, we would be immediately productive and significantly less stupid. Then the aging process could be reversed, so as we grew (ungrew?) we would grow younger and revert back to childhood. We would appreciate being a child so much more having been an adult first. How many times have you said to yourself, “Gee, I wish I were a kid again?” I like this idea. I shall spend more time working it out and get back to you.
Just to wrap this up, I don’t think parents get the credit they deserve. Parents should have uniforms, like soldiers. After all, they are in mortal combat every day. If they wore uniforms, you could see all the medals and stripes parents could get for various achievements in raising their children. You could earn a medal for a gazillion diaper changes, followed up by potty training, then teaching the kid how to drive without quadrupling your insurance rates, stopping them from getting involved in booze and drugs and lots of other daunting child-raising tasks. Man, I’d have so many medals on my uniform I’d look like a brigadier general. Everyone would salute me…except the kids. They don’t respect parents, let alone the medals and stripes on their uniforms…they don’t see them.
Today is the end of International Green Month. You may continue to be green, do green or share green beyond this date, if you so wish. However, you simply will not get official credit in the International Green Month Journal. I will notify you if there is another color to celebrate at the appropriate time.
Books by Marc Kuhn: THE POPE’S STONE, an historical novel that follows two descendants of a Virginia family who, despite living a century apart, share uncanny similarities in their lives; NEVER GOOSE A MOOSE, a collection of whimsical verse featuring thought-provoking “never-do’s” that children should beware of; and ABOUT A FARM, a children’s book about challenges we all face every day, regardless of where we live. All three books are available at amazon.com and each has its own .com website under its title.
Intimate details about Marc Kuhn and other exhilarating stuff at marckuhn.com
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