“Somehow we realize that great stories are told in conflict, but we are unwilling to embrace the potential greatness of the story we are actually in. We think God is unjust, rather than a master storyteller.”
I’m no expert at parenting. My life plan was not to be a mother; I use this as an excuse whenever raising offspring is difficult.
Still, I care about my kids. I care that they aren’t psychopaths or sociopaths. I care that they know how to cook, clean, and respect authority. They’ll definitely put the seat down.
Training my spawn involves a lot of strain, some of which comes from doubt:
Am I doing the right thing by making his friend send him home to finish a job?
Should I have yelled when my sweet, little pre-teen gave me attitude?
Was that too harsh to make him walk to school because he slept in and refused to get ready on time?
(In case you wonder at the masculine pronouns, I have all boys.)
I thought about the fine line of parenting today. I believe I thought about it the third time I prepared for vocal conflict with my most difficult son.
Me in the driver’s seat, patiently, “So, you threw the carseat into the back, yet say it’s #4’s fault because it hit his head before hitting #3?”
Him, mimicking my patient manner, “Yes. #4 made a dumb decision to climb over the seat. If he hadn’t done that, #3 wouldn’t have been hit.”
Believe it or not, this exchange went on for a good ten minutes. He refused responsibility for the thrown-carseat injuries; I refused to let him dodge said responsibility.
The Line here is Respect vs. “pick your battles.” Almost all of my lines are Something vs. “pick your battles.” My choice to engage (or not) goes back to that no-sociopath thing.
I know not all of you have children -at least, not currently. Whether you have or not, have you felt the strain of walking a line? What did you choose? Was it worth it?
Here’s what went down this past week:
Wednesday, October 16: Wrote “Where, Oh Where Should My Blogging Go?”
Saturday, October 19: Announced the 48th Weekly Terrible Poetry Contest. The theme is the Old West. PLEASE ENTER!
Sunday, October 20: Shared Carrot Ranch‘s 3rd rodeo. Another one’s coming tomorrow!
Also wrote “The Wife Stands Alone” for Pensitivity’s Three Things Challenge.
Monday, October 21: An inspirational quote by Dieter F. Uchtdorf.
Tuesday, October 22: “Since the Bombs Fell: One,” the first in a dystopian series.
Wednesday, October 23: Today.
Photo Credit: Unsplash
©2019 Chelsea Owens
I’ve been married to my husband for almost 16 years. Before you start adding on your fingers in order to determine my age, I’ll also tell y’all that we initially met in junior high school and began dating at 16.
Just as the term ‘high school sweethearts’ does not involve the clean romance touch of a Hallmark movie, sixteen years of marriage does not involve …well… the clean romance touch of a Hallmark movie, either.
We’ve been having a rough patch lately. I’m a bit too honest, honestly, and have brought up our roughness and subsequent marriage counseling to other women. I have yet to encounter one who does not respond with, “Oh, yes! Marriage is tough. I think everyone ought to do counseling!”
But I’m a people watcher. I’m a people reader. Other people tell me they all have problems and marriage is a challenge, but other people do not act the way my husband and I do.
I’m not asking to be placed in other couples’ bedrooms. I am often wondering if the issues we have are really the same as others’. -Because I have also had other women talk about conflicts or personality quirks with lighthearted humor.
“You know how (my husband) gets,” a neighbor told a group of us at lunch. “He’s always cranky when we travel somewhere and he has to spend money on food.” She laughed; we laughed. She and her husband have been married long enough that they are now empty-nesters. She also said, “I explained to my son that married people like us may complain and tease, but we love each other.”
My teasing comments about my husband started a recent fight because he got self-defensive and then withdrew. Then I, quite maturely, nagged at him and complained so he (naturally) got more defensive and eventually said mean things to get me to go away or (as I told him) hurt me as much as I hurt him….
It all sounds rather childish typed out, but is quite devastating in the moment. Don’t worry; we’re working on it.
Our therapist says we’re not unique but I’m a doubter. Does everyone really have problems in marriage? Do you laugh it off and know you love each other anyway? Or, is couple-hood what Erma Bombeck used as the title for one of her books: A Marriage Made in Heaven, or, Too Tired for an Affair?
What a week! This was the schedule, at least according to my sneaky back-posting:
Wednesday, December 12: What is the Beat of YOUR Creation?, a short, sweet post about music and its role in creation.
Thursday, December 13: Skinwalkers, XLV
Friday, December 14: Winner of The Fifth Weekly Terrible Poetry Contest announced. Congratulations, Ruth Scribbles.
Saturday, December 15: Beginning of The (Sixth) Weekly Terrible Poetry Contest (Check it out!).
Sunday, December 16: Fractured Fairy Tales That Lost, my entries in Carrot Ranch Literary Community‘s contest awhile ago.
Monday, December 17: Inspirational Quote by Matt Kahn.
Tuesday, December 18: Wilhelmina Winters, Seventy-Six,
Wednesday, December 19: This post.
I’ve been swamped with Christmas projects. I have only to make cookie plates for all the neighbors after uncovering my kitchen, then wrapping all the presents whilst the children are snuggled all very tightly in their beds.