Friday, August 24, 2012

Crash Course In Parenting [101]

Wow--it's been so long since I've revisited my blog. I remember spending countless hours here, typing paragraphs laced with sarcasm and life lessons while trying to figure out why the average customer I came across during my days in retail had the common sense of a rock. Those were the days of fewer responsibilities but seemingly many points of stress. My outlet was to vent--if you will--to the masses that make up the Internet.

As time went on, it also simultaneously escaped me. My blog went by the wayside. I got married to a wonderful husband April 29, 2006, and we recently had a daughter who was born October 7, 2011. Ever since she was born, life has been dramatically different. Of course it has changed in the most cliché ways, but it has also made me step back and say, "Holy cow! Where did my childhood go?" Wasn't I the one sitting at the "kiddie table" yesterday? Wasn't I the one with my face jammed in a corner and/or getting my behind beat last week?
I had a conversation with an elderly woman in the waiting room of my daughter's doctor's office this afternoon, and we discussed just that, and I'm coining a phrase now that I'll call "life speed".
Pre-children "life speed" perspective: You've just turned 21, but you'll be remaining this age physically and mentally for the next 60 years (at least) because you never get old.
Post-children "life speed" perspective: You're growing hair out of your ears and buying wrinkle cream and Just For Men by the gross all before your child comes home from the hospital.
I'm now living on the opposite side of the fence. I'm the parent, and she's the child. It's feeling like I'm in an alternate universe.

As I'm typing this, I'm listening to the sounds of the neighborhood children playing, which is giving me a glimpse into a future of temper tantrums in public, home fashion shows that end with my clothes torn and makeup on the walls, young love ending in tears and heartache, and sleepover parties with hoards of giddy girls squealing at a decibel level that would scare a pitbull into submission. All these can be looked at as future points of stress that may cause me to bald before I reach the age of forty (if I'm lucky). Wrapped up in all that insanity is the sweet reality of having this person in my life who is totally an individual but is all of me at the same time. I know her inside and out, and no matter what she does in life that may upset or frustrate me to the point of wanting to subject my brain to a lobotomy, she is my child, and that "unconditional love" that all parents talk about is absolute truth in my world.

Although I'm just getting started with this whole parenting role and haven't yet been exposed to the full potential of my daughter's emotional ups and downs, I'm somehow looking forward to it. You can never come out of a difficult experience without being stronger than you were going into it. Every possible experience you go through builds the fibers of your being into who you are today. Before my daughter came along, I could never have imagined the person I've become at this moment. I'm in control of helping to mold her into the person she is and the person she will be; however, she's also molding me into a better person than I could be on my own. How cool is that?

1 comment:

Jade said...

Beautifully written! Such a fantastic point of view. :)