After being cooped up with our family over the last eon known as pandemic, you may have wanted to break away from mom and dad and silly sister and dopey brother. When the urge to bolt comes over you that’s okay. Every kid I have ever known, save a curious few, has yearned to test their wings, free from parental pressure and orders. What many of them don’t know is that their parents often have similar thoughts of carving big chunks of space between the two of you as well.
Parents are constrained however, as the co-creators of their offspring, somewhat by law, but much more nobly by the sense of paternal and maternal duties. Something inside of us tells us that this is right. To want their child to learn to fly is the wish of every parent. It can also become the source of conflict between both as the boundaries of authority and individual respect are established. Once these boundaries are in place, the relationship has a much better chance of thriving.
Allowing the young ones to adequately and safely stretch their wings becomes paramount in bringing them to the fullness of their calling. Almost any parent would want nothing more for their child than for them to fulfill their destiny. But down here on earth where it all happens in real time, we many times say things and do things that don’t help to foster that success. It’s a long learning curve. The key is to know how to meander through these family times and come to that wonderful place called home. Home being the place where it all began.
For some their home might be a bad place to want to hang around and that’s really sad. In my three decades in public education I saw many such cases. It truly broke my heart and does to this day. Being the place where it all began, our home should be a place of comfort, safety, acceptance and most of all, love.
When that one main ingredient, love, is not present then home is not pleasant. So when those times of conflict come, make sure to allow room for others to grow. Your dumb sister may one day be your trusted confidant. That nagging mama, or yelling papa might just turn out to be pretty good friends to have around later in life.
I have seen all of these things happen for four generations now. I consider that my research qualifies me as an expert. So enjoy your family, don’t just endure them. Take the time to appreciate them, because before you know it, they will be gone. All too soon the chickies fly away, leaving parents praising the empty nest, while secretly worrying about them daily.
Too often children let small things disrupt their connection with parents and by the time they figure it out, they are apologizing to a gravestone. Instead, celebrate family. Revere the times spent together, because those times taken for making memories never come around again.
Children, remember that mom and dad are not aliens from a different planet, or idiots from a past generation. They are people, just like you, only a few decades further down the road of life. Be wise enough to allow them to help you get there as well. Parents, don’t lord it over your kids and keep them locked away from their purpose and desires in life.
Come alongside them and allow them to grow and to become the individual person that each of them is meant to be, free from ideas of what you think they should do or be. Don’t crush them with authority nor allow them to run wild. There is a balance and a healthy family is one that finds the positive things to build on while giving room for the child to fail, always ready to restore when they are ready. Enjoy your family. You were placed there for a reason.