I Am Responsible For 3 People…How Did This Happen?
My twins are going to be three years old on Friday. Three. How did that happen so quickly? It seems like yesterday that we were waiting for them to arrive. They were so small, so needy and dependent. Ethan was only two when they were born. They were all so close in age. These last few years have been pretty crazy trying to keep up with all of them. And then I had this epiphany recently: their futures, their well beings, their possibilities and drive to reach their goals, are all my responsibility.
Not mine entirely…my husband is equally responsible. But the weight of it all just hit me. Ethan is in kindergarten now and becoming more and more independent. The girls started preschool this week and while I couldn’t believe they were already big enough to be going to school, I was equally happy that I would get a few hours a week to myself – without all of the kids – every week. I didn’t cry when I dropped them off. I didn’t have the feelings that I was done with “babyhood”‘; in fact I felt a weight lift from my shoulders that we made it through those first few years!
These three little people are absolutely amazing. They are beautiful and push every button I have and continuously surprise me with their quirks and knowledge and humor. They make me laugh and feel full of pride and then make me want to pull my hair out. I am not a patient person, but they make me realize that (maybe) I really am more patient than I thought. They make me appreciate life and the little things so much more, pray for bedtime, and want to hug and kiss them for hours on end. They make me want to have another baby, and the next second make me say I will never have another baby. They make me want to be a better person for them. They are perfectly imperfect and I am so proud to be their mom.
I guess it just recently hit me that parenthood isn’t just keeping kids safe and happy, it is so much more than that. We are responsible for making them responsible, functioning, “normal” adults. We must make sure they understand right from wrong, and that they do the right thing because not only are they supposed to, but because they know it’s the right thing and that they want to.
We need them to understand the importance (and in some cases the un-importance) of money and how to use it properly.
How to treat others.
How to treat their chosen partner in life: with love, respect, trust and support.
How to share.
How to know when to speak up and when to keep their mouths closed.
In the most basic generalities, how to be a good person.
It’s a lot harder than it sounds. I read the words I just wrote and realize that those few sentences really don’t even touch the gravitity of this responsibility.
And then I think to myself: Who in the world would trust me with these three beautiful people? Who would think that I have what it takes to handle that HUGE responsibility?
And then I think: What if the person that handed me that trust is wrong? What if I CAN’T live up to the expectations? What if (big inhale of breath) I screw my kids up?
And then I think that maybe I’m not the only parent to feel this way. This whole parenting gig is a live-and-learn kind of process. That by the time we “get” it, we will be done raising kids.
Have you ever felt this way before? Does the parenthood pressure ever get to you? Please tell me I’m not alone!