Christina M. Currie: A high pressure job

I'm scared. Really scared.

What do I know about raising kids? What do I know about counseling them and laying the foundation for a solid set of values that will carry them through the perils of today's society?

Maybe it's recent conversations I've had with people about family members who are battling a drug problem. Maybe it's the dismal state of the economy and the seemingly endless number of political battles on the horizon.

Maybe it was looking at my 8-year-old daughter and thinking that yesterday she was 4 and tomorrow, she'll be 16.

The entire burden of what it means to raise a child came crashing down on me, and I started questioning my every decision.

Have I blown eight years? Was I home enough? Did I listen enough? Did we read together enough? Was I, too, impatient when I helped her with her homework? Did I push too hard? Was I too strict? Not strict enough?

The list goes on and on.

Do all parents feel this way? Am I overreacting?

Me. It's all me.

Granted, I've got support in many forms. Friends and family aren't hanging me out to dry, but still, I'm responsible for this little being. And, not to be glib, but it's a tough world out there.

Katie's at an age where friendships are fragile. One day, someone is her best friend, the next day they're not. The reasons are vague: "she wouldn't play what I wanted to play" or "she said she doesn't like me anymore. I don't know why."

Third-grade drama.

And it breaks my heart.

How can I ever endure eighth-grade drama? What do I say when my oh-so-special girl doesn't feel pretty enough, smart enough, fast enough?

How do I find the confidence to let her make her own decisions, even when I know they're wrong?

For me, autumn always has been quiet time.

Reflective time.

Alone time.

Just the smell brings waves of nostalgia.

Maybe I'm getting carried away by the season.

I have many questions, and not so many answers. I wonder if my own parents had the same worries. I wonder how other parents handle those same worries.

It seems to me that you have a very small window in which to influence the person your child will be. Looking at my daughter, it occurred to me that more than half my window was closed.

They don't lie when they say it goes fast. And, this isn't one of those cases where you can say, "That was interesting. Didn't quite work, but I'll do better next time."

This is a one-shot deal and mistakes can cost them the rest of their lives.

How's that for pressure?

I'm like every other parent out there, feeling their way though unfamiliar territory doing the best they can.

But what if my best isn't good enough?

Comments

misterkindbuds 5 years, 9 months ago

Hey Granny,

Why don't you heed your own advice? If you don't like it, don't read it.

By the way, where is gingervitis? The mental ward? Rehab?

At least she's not wasting space in my paper today.

Ha!

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MidConBud 5 years, 10 months ago

Do you realize that your Katie is only 8? You're acting like she's a grown up. She's a child let her be one. As for yourself perhaps you should get a hobby and leave your poor child alone. Oh and that smell that brings you nostalgia........that's a meth lab.

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misterkindbuds 5 years, 10 months ago

If you need advice from your family, why don't you just walk a couple trailers down and knock on their door? I hope this column is still going when Katie is 16 .... and mom is still trying to observe and control her every move.

Wacky, I'll tells ya.

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grannyrett 5 years, 10 months ago

I don't know lonelyone. It seems that all single parents--or maybe all parents--wonder if they are doing things right with their kids. Wish they came with instructions. Would make it a lot easier.

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Ray Cartwright 5 years, 10 months ago

grannyrett, wouldn't it be a dull world if all the children came with instructions and were raised and acted the same. or maybe it would be scary LOL

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grannyrett 5 years, 10 months ago

dentedfender-You're right. My point was that all parents, at some times, have doubts about doing the right thing with their kids. Who knows the outcome when it comes to kids? All we can do is raise them with love and understanding, be wise enough to know when to let them make their own mistakes and not blame ourselves for them, and know that we do the best we can. We can give them all the tools to grow into productive adults, but they have to do it on their own. My kids have made mistakes, but, I'm pretty darn proud of all of them.

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lonelyone 5 years, 10 months ago

Once again granny, your right. That was part of my point in saying "get a grip". I know there are going to be times when you wake up in the night and wonder if you did the right thing that day with your kids, but she needs to take a deep breath and slowly let it out AND get a grip or she'll drive herself and her kids crazy! If she'd been standing in front of me and saying all those things........did I do this and what about this and maybe I should have and.........I'd have looked her in the eye and said "Chris...get a grip"!! "take a deep breath and let it out slowly!"

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misterkindbuds 5 years, 10 months ago

I'll bet Currie is institutionalized before this column quits running. I am very interested to read about Katie at 17, though.

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misterkindbuds 5 years, 9 months ago

Cuckoo, cuckoo, cuckoo ... right, I'm the only person who can't stand to read that crap.

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grannyrett 5 years, 9 months ago

mkb-If you can't stand to read it, then don't. Sometimes I enjoy it, sometimes, I don't. But, I don't read it in order to put Chris or her kids down. I don't read it so I can post hateful comments. You haven't won. You have just shown how low a person can sink. Slither off somewhere and have another hit. It must be the only thing that keeps you going.

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woodsinsd 5 years, 9 months ago

Perhaps mkb---you should take a look at yourself before you make comments about granny....I'm guessing that what you've just spouted about granny, upon closer inspection, would be more relevant to yourself. A wise person once told me that before you make accusations at someone else, you'd best take a long, hard look at yourself to make sure you're not trying to pawn it off on them. You, sir, have not won anything....

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misterkindbuds 5 years, 9 months ago

Granny, You sound like a bitter old lady. Do you always lash out at others when things don't go your way?

And yes, it looks like I won. This is America and I am entitled to my opinion. I know in your household, you think whatever you say goes, but it's time for you to wake up.

Heed you own advice, you hypocrite. If you don't like what I write, don't read it.

That's your advice, but then you attack when you don't like what you read.

And there is a difference between "hateful" and the truth.

Christina Currie is a hack. Plain and simple. That's the truth. Name one other paper that would publish lame columns that focus on the life of an 8-year-old.

It sounds as if living through your children is a family tradition with the Mathers' clan.

So quit calling me a snake or a hateful person. Maybe YOU should have taken the extra steps to educate her better before she put her half-cocked views before the public.

But then you couldn't lash out at me could you?

See granny, you are a mad, angry, defensive person who is unable to accept criticism. Do you ever blame yourself for the erratic behavior of your children or is it always someone else's fault?

Granny, I am a winner. You are a loser.

Now, I will go take another hit of the Maui.

Good luck with those authoritative, dominatrix ways that have proven so effective.

Just remember ... I won.

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grannyrett 5 years, 9 months ago

Patrick-I'm not related to Chris. Never claimed to be. It was mkb that put that forward. Just goes to show how delusional he is.

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lostyermarbles 5 years, 9 months ago

Please someone just buy Chris a diary for home use only.

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