I May Not Be Their Friend, But I'll Always Be Their Mom

There is an epidemic today of parents who have forgotten that being their child’s friend is not their primary goal. Of course I want my children to like me. Nothing stings worst than hearing “I hate you” from the life you helped create. However, my goal is not to be their friend when they are teenagers, but to be their friend when they are adults.

I just read an article interviewing Billy Ray Cyrus. My heart ached for him as he blamed the Disney Channel’s show “Hannah Montana” for ruining his life. (Click on the link to read the article). He says the “show destroyed my family. I'd take it back in a second. For my family to be here and just everybody be okay, safe and sound and happy and normal would have been fantastic. Heck, yeah. I'd erase it all in a second if I could." He claims that “Hannah Montana” (a wholesome family show about a normal teenager by day who is a singing star by night), in which he costars with his daughter, launched his daughter as a teen idol and sent her spiraling out of control. He admits that he wished he’d disciplined more and worried less about being her friend.

My job as a parent is not to be the coolest parent. It’s not to be the hippest mom. My job is to build a life where my children feel safe and secure. My job is to teach them the skills they need to succeed. Kindness. Honesty. Integrity. Hard Work. Self Worth. My job is to teach them how to live a happy life without me. And sometimes, that means I may not be their friend. But, that’s ok, because I am their mother.

Someone told me recently that the most influential time for children is between the ages of 8 and 12 years old. These are the years where they comprehend the most before the worldly ways creep in and try to corrupt them. It is our best chance at building a solid, firm foundation under our children before they are tested with the trials of life. Once they turn 12, they are well on their way to be a teenager, when they believe that life is eternal and bad stuff always happens to the other guy; the way to have fun is live in today. So, I look for every opportunity I can to teach them, mold them, guide them and let them make decisions now and sometimes even suffer the consequences of their choices. They need to know that life has consequences; good ones and bad ones. My kids are still little, so I certainly don’t have all the answers, but I try hard to look at those around me. I pay attention to what works and what hasn’t worked. I listen to what they say, whether I agree or not and then I put my main focus on my family. I want to take advantage of every opportunity I have today to prepare them for tomorrow. I live life with my eyes WIDE open because I don’t want to look back one day and realize I’d lost control way back there and there’s nothing I can do about it now. I know that much of it is completely out of my control, so today I will give it my all.

Whaddya think?


For My Girls...

I am a Youth Leader at my church where I am responsible for the 12/13 year old girls. Tonight for our activity, we are having a talent show. I had a momentary stike of panic, a few days ago, when they asked me what talent I would be sharing. And then, I sat down and wrote this for them. This is for my girls...

Beautiful Blue Eyes
Once upon a time, there was a beautiful princess, who was loved by all who knew her. She lived in an amazing castle with a family who adored her and spent her days roaming the countryside and exploring the town. As time went by and she grew older, the day soon came for her to choose a prince. She had prepared for this day her whole life. She had been taught from the time that she was a small child that the prince she chose, would someday rule with her as King and Queen of over all her land. This was not an easy task nor one to be taken lightly. As she stood at her chamber windows and watched the princes that were lining at the castle gate, she suddenly felt the thrill of what she was about to do. Somewhere out there in that line of young men, was her handsome prince.

She spent the day dancing and chatting and mingling with these princes. She met handsome ones, ugly ones and ok- looking ones. She met rich princes, poor princes and many in between. She met nice princes, cocky princes, boring princes and shy princes. She had a delightful time and as the evening came to a close, she knew that the next day she would have to make her choice. She spent all night thinking about all of the wonderful, handsome and amazing men she had met. She pondered and sighed and giggled all through the night and by the first morning light she had made her choice.

She dressed in her finest gown and spent hours perfecting her make-up and finding the perfect placement of her crown amidst her fountain of curls. As she stood before her anxious suitors she surveyed them all once more before she walked through the crowd and grabbed the hand of the young man with the most beautiful and mesmerizing blue eyes she had ever seen. He was not the kindest (or even really kind at all) nor the most handsome and he was quite possibly the poorest of them all, but she was sure that he would give her the babies with the most beautiful blue eyes and that would be worth all she had given up.

They had a fabulous wedding and went on to have lots of babies and eventually became King and Queen of all the land. As time went on and she grew older she found herself old, like Grandma old. She began to look around and survey this life she had carved for herself. She realized that she had an ugly husband, with beautiful blue eyes, who had never been a friend to her. In fact they hardly spoke or spent any time together at all. They lived in a tiny run down castle because he was lazy and never did much to support his family. She had grown old and haggardly from her years of running the house and the kingdom alone. Her life had not turned out in any way like she had imagined it. In fact, her one precious treasure was her six amazing, but average looking children, none of which had beautiful blue eyes.

Too often in life we settle. We settle for the mean friends because they are so much more popular than the kind kids. We settle for the mediocre job because we don’t want to put the time, effort and sacrifice into going to school to better our education. We settle for and marry the Cute Boy because he was just oh so cute or said the right words even though he was very superficial and selfish. Life is long and the road that we choose will have lasting impacts on our eventual destination, so as you choose your prince (or career or friends or make any other important decisions) don’t ever forget, that it is never worth it in the long run, to settle.

Whaddya think?