As stated in my previous blog, I'm home for a visit which means that I will either attempt to block out everything that goes on in my life in France, or I will spend an obsessive amount of time analyzing everything. The last few days have been the latter.
And what has been on my mind has been childcare. So, perhaps I should have sent this out there earlier but, kids are pretty cool. A common question of my non-childcaring friends ask me is if I still want to have kiddies (NERD alert, writing that phrase just reminded me of indirect something or another that I learned in French class, which is deceptively complicated....) Answer--Of course. I wouldn't say I am more prepared, and I do wonder if I will 'run' my household more like my mother, which I remember not so well as I was a child, and cannot imagine was very well organized; or will do things more like S, who was forced to have a more rigid schedule (baths at 5:45, dinner by 7:00, bedtime at 8:30...), as there were four kiddies running around.
I do however, believe that I have a more realistic grasp of what its like. Parenthood doesn't stop. Ever. My own parents have been parents for thirty years, and its still going. Sure the hours get better, but they still have to deal with 2 am phone calls from one of us crying (ok, by one of us I mean me, and its thanks to the time difference). Now I've been only dealing with children that don't belong to me, and was only around the first group for a year, and the second group for two weeks now. But I must say for all the difficulties and headaches that I have experienced via children, and what I have put my own parents through, I can look at the relationship I have with my parents and say---A hundred percent worth it.
My mother is the sweetest person I have ever met. She also loves me unconditionally. She makes me laugh constantly and has a wonderful rose tinted view of the world, but does not lack any depth. When I hear her talk about her opinions of things I realize that she shared these with me and helped develop me into what I hope is an openminded empathetic person. She is also someone I can count on for advice, but can (occasionally) listen silently when I just need to vent. It's true that she can be meddlesome but she doesn't need to control my life. She is happy to watch me, my sister, and my brother grow and make our own decisions.
From my father I learned a sense of humor. Even my dad's emails that he sends me occasionally to try and bully into becoming a more cultured person are full of his natural humor and wit. I was really emotional right before I came home, as I was the previous time (I'm ok with not missing my family until right before I know I'm going to see them, it's the most difficult, and you really should see me barging through customs at the airport, because at that point, I really can't wait anymore) and I was reading an email from him and just started crying. I know, I'm pathetic.
Anyway, my point is--For those of you who have read this blog, childcare is nothing if not interesting. Even the best kids have their bad days. They do gross stuff, they do stupid things, they make you angry (God knows I pissed my parents off growing up), but you deal with all this, the annoyances KNOWING that one day, they will probably turn out to be an okay person. You love them unconditionally, you laugh when they discover something new, you discipline them when they do something unacceptable (writing it down so you can use it to embarass them later in life, of course), and you take a shit ton of pictures because one day they'll be adults and the whole thing will be over.