Kindergarten. Untied shoelaces, runny noses, lice, dirty fingernails, noise, color, letters, torn jeans, sharing, and snack time.
My daughter is now in Kindergarten.
I cannot believe how fast she’s growing, I know parents always say this, but my gosh does time fly. Every day I drop her off at my grandmother’s house, go to work, pick her up, get her ready for school, drop her off at school, go to work, pick her up from school, drop her off at my grandmother’s, go to work, pick her up and go home.
Exhausting, right? It is. It’s also rewarding. Having my daughter run to me every day with a new story, a new tale, a new letter learned, hair a mess…All of these things make my daily struggle worth it. She’s opened up so much since school started; my once shy, strawberry blonde toddler is now this vivacious, outspoken character of a child. So open to learning and making new friends, so open to sharing her experiences and helping her peers.
We as parents work hard to try and raise our children in a way that will benefit not only them….But society. What are you doing to help your child? Sit down and think. Everything you say and do is being monitored by your child. Everything you teach your child WILL stick, whether you believe it or not. Are you teaching them their manners? Or how to share? Or how to be less selfish? I’m a single mother who works full time. Not to say that my day-to-day routine is any more complicated than anyone else’s…But damn is it hectic. Yet, I still try to find the time to show my daughter that I’m present. Yes, physically, emotionally, mentally and dutifully present. I’ve witnessed some parents going through the motions of raising their children…It is not enough to just exist people! Give yourself a reason to exist! Give people a reason to know you exist! Most of all give your child a reason to be happy about your existence and speak kindly of you for a lifetime!
On the other end of the spectrum, there are those parents who try too hard. Don’t make a mess, don’t get dirty, be quiet, stop singing, you talk too much, blah blah blah blaaaah blah! Your children will eventually shut you out for micromanaging. If you yell too much, they’ll shut you out. If you gripe too much, they’ll do things to terrorize you. It’s okay to let your children get a little dirty, it’s okay for them to make a mess in your home (they can clean it up themselves later), and it’s okay for your children to express themselves. This whole concept of “children are to be seen and not heard” is pure, steaming, bullshit. Encourage your children, you’re on their team.
All of the above are things that I had to learn during my self reflection period. Every action that I take, is taken with my daughter in mind. None of us are perfect, nor should you strive to be perfect. However, you should always strive to be BETTER.
After all, there’s a sponge staring up at you.