My Boys are spoiled, spoiled rotten and it is all my fault. I did it. I am a late bloomer and a people pleaser and I have fallen into this stupid trap of being the perfect parent and giving my children a “Happy Childhood”. These past few months my heart has been heavy–somewhere in the middle of the Christmas ad’s and the Birthday lists I notice that my kids want everything they see–and they don’t need it, care for it or appreciate it.
I had a childhood–much like life– it was what it was– with moments of happiness and joy, sorrow, loss, shame. Tough lessons and disappointment. I was safe from harm, cared for and loved. My parents met my needs and I got a few of my wants. A DumDum from the A.O. Smith Credit Union was a whoop on Saturday mornings and I knew better than to ask for candy at the Thrifty Mart.
One of my favorite memories is one summer, my Mom made fried zucchini for dinner. I thought it was great–like appetizers! What I didn’t know and found out later–that was all we had. I make fried zucchini at least once a summer and tell everyone I know the story!
One thing my parents got absolutely right is “the Christmas family”. We had almost always just enough–we never went without the basic needs in our life and at Christmastime we would pick a family to “gift”. Mom would pick a family and we would start talking about it and gathering things after Halloween. Every year just the right family seemed to cross our path. We would collect and wrap our gifts and fill large black Glad bags. Dad would park far away, but close enough for my sister and I to see the “drop”. Tiny Tim would leave the loot, ring the bell and run like heck in the ice and snow. We sisters would snicker and our hearts would pound til he made it to the get away car and we peeled off! That was fun!!! More fun than Chuck E Cheese or Toys R Us…it felt good!
So, here I am in 2013 and I realize I need to teach my children to love, give, serve and not to want, compare and beg. I took bags of trash and goodwill out of the room last week and knew we needed to change course. This life that gives me so much to blog about is demanding my attention today. (Be glad you don’t smell what I smell!) Tune in tomorrow and I will introduce you to my plan to teach my boys the secret of true happiness this year.