Happy Children’s day to all our lovely boys and girls of all ages. We love you to the moon and back and are so grateful for the opportunity to be called your parents and guardians for life. We felt you form in our tummies even though some of us spent a great part of that time throwing up, we felt you grow so big inside of us, we gave birth to you and have been trying our very best to help you grow and act right in this world since then.
Now to the matter at hand today. We live in an instant world where we determine how good things are by how fast we get results. We write Computer Based Tests and get our results immediately. We go for lab tests and can tell after a brief wait our blood group. For those that work, we put in our all and when promotion time comes, we expect our names to be on the list with a pay raise attached to it, or we are done mentally and begin to edit our CV and spread it around looking for another job. We are used to doing things and being able to say that we are done with it. Finished! Done and Dusted! Now the question is, when can we say we are done with parenting?
A million dollar question indeed? Can we ever say we are done with parenting? Who evaluates our performance as parents and gives us a score card? Will the evaluation be fair considering all we had to go through raising our kids and the limited or abundant resources we had at our disposal? Will our kids be able to know and appreciate all the hard work and sacrifices we have had to make on their behalf? More million dollar questions with no immediate answers.
However things unfold, we can be sure that parenting when done right is a rewarding job. It is a divine responsibility that can only be evaluated by the One who gave us the task in the first place (God). As to whether the evaluation will be fair considering our limitations, I want to believe so. However where there are opportunities for us to improve our expertise and competence on the matter, we must seize those moments and improve ourselves. For example there are scores of webinars going on currently helping to teach parents how to home school effectively, or how to have a home schedule that works. There are websites offering free tutoring and learning for kids in this lock down season where we are no longer doing the traditional schools, are you taking advantage of these numerous opportunities?
As to whether our kids will truly understand all we went through for them, I cannot say they will a hundred percent. They may get a glimpse only when they get older, but they will never be in the exact same scenario you faced while trying to raise them. As they get older, life will help them appreciate bits and snippets of the sacrifices parents have had to make, especially as they become parents themselves. So do not worry about this inconsequential matter, because whether they do or not, you still have a fantastic job to do.
Now as to when we can finally say we are done with parenting, I think I can confidently say that a parent’s job is never done. My mother still dotes on her kids whenever she has a chance to do so. She would cook soup in the East, freeze it and send to my siblings in Lagos. She would brave the dread of winter just to help me with my twin babies and knowing my mum and how she hates anything cold, I knew that was a big deal. Something you do for only your ‘baby’. This does not equate to us still being so involved in the lives of our children even when they are fully grown and parents of their own, but what it means is that we relinquish control in different stages of our kids’ lives. When our babies are going off to secondary school or going to the university, which is us letting go off them a bit. When they start dating and want to get married, that is another new level of letting go.
We aim to do our very best job as parents and then when the time is right, we step aside and trust that our kids have been raised right and can then take over effectively. It is foolhardy to still drag the reins of control over a 5 year old boy and also a 40 year old man. We must never also forget to rely on divine ability to be great parents of great kids. These kids are sent from heaven on a divine mission and we cannot but look for divine guidance from God to help us do a great job on this humongous task of being partly responsible for a life and how it turns out.
So even though this our work may never be done, we roll our sleeves up and dive into the task body, soul and spirit, for when we look into those eyes of our kids, we know that it is all worth it. Gather your kids round you today and give them a parent’s blessing, it sure goes a long way!
Happy Children’s Day and Cheers to the Parents that raise Happy Children!
(picture credits: the internet)