I’m scared. I’m 30-something years old, I’m about to turn forty actually if I’m being honest, and my mom is old. I don’t have my life figured out, and I’m afraid that if I don’t figure it out soon I’m going to run out of time, but here’s the worst part…it just hit me that my mom’s probably fucking traumatized too.
A few years ago I was in a dollar store, and I heard a young mom discipline her child, I smiled and said “you’re doing a really good job, you know?” She said thank you. I’ve never said it to another mom since because like, it’s totally not my place, but it didn’t sit well with me the look on that woman’s face…like she needed to hear it.
I don’t have kids, and I’m not even certain that I want them, but what I do know is that a lot of my friends who do have kids are fucking struggling. Between raising their kids, and their own shit, they have everything on the planet on their shoulders, and honestly, there’s only so much you can say to your kid.
And so sometimes it just becomes easier to not say anything at all, but the problem is they feel that and their reactions to you, are reactions to YOU. They may not know why you’re the way you are, and they may not understand, but when they yell, kick, spit, and hit, they are reacting to the adults in their lives, and the reason they behave in THESE specific ways, is because they don’t always know the language that we adults speak.
I know a kid who recently lost his dad, and he hates his mother, beyond belief, fucking loathes the woman, and rightfully so, but I also understand all the reasons she is that he doesn’t. There are family secrets he’s not privy to at age ten, that he won’t learn for many years, which is going to make the next few years of his life, without his dad, very difficult for him. I think about him every single day and all I want to do is hug him and tell him I love him, but even if I did, the truth is, there’s nothing I can say that will change the way that he feels about his mom.
We choose to give birth. Not everyone is given that choice, but when we are – and only when we are – we have an extra responsibility to take care of these little beings who need us, but sometimes we treat them like adults and we forget…they’re little.
This little boy now has all these big adult feelings and we’ve had 20, 30, 40, years to figure out how to deal with these emotions, to know who to talk to, to set up patterns of behavior that help us express ourselves in healthy ways, they’re still learning.
But so are adults.
The adult is just a word that we use to describe the big humans from the little humans, that’s it. “You’re this old so you’re an adult,” is not the same as being psychologically prepared to be an adult, to raise children, to work in the system of this planet, there aren’t enough years on this planet to fully understand how to conceptualize what it means to live on this planet.
It’s a lot. A lot of emotion, a lot of work, a lot of balance, and no one, and I mean this sincerely, NO ONE gets off this planet without causing some hurt or leaving some light behind. The worst people in the world that you can think of, are someone’s reason to live, so like, how the fuck are we supposed to know how to raise children?
My point here is that if you got to this point, I want you to understand you’re doing a really good job. You’re learning as much as you can, you’re fighting with all you have, you’re protected by light and by love, and you’re going to do the best you can to make sure that your kid has everything they need and I have every faith in this.
So relax. For like ten minutes, because you’ve earned it.