The biggest test of your efforts as a parent is watching your children take initiative in doing what they believe is right without your urge in imput. My eldest two children have begun to take more of an active role in taking initiative at home in helping beyond their expected chores, and I couldn’t be more proud as a mother in watching them grow. My son and daughter for the most part follow my instructions given at home if asked them to do something. There are occasions like all parents where we have to repeat ourselves in telling them to clean their rooms, but they do so without much fuss. I have secretly noticed from watching on the sidelines the two of them putting forth more of an effort in “pulling their weight” in sharing in the responsibilities in keeping our ship afloat especially during the rocking seasons when one of the “crew members” are down.
The 4th of July is a major holiday for most in the United States for celebration for families. Our family of six have our little traditions in making the day special at home. We planned on watching fireworks and maybe shooting a few fireworks in the air, and sharing in our country’s tradition in grilling. My husband and son love their bar-b-que. My daughters enjoying helping with food prep, but their favorite thing is to dress pretty in the flag colors in cute little outfits. Our plans are subjected to change often when the onset of a sickle cell pain crisis strikes my husband. It wasn’t in our plans as a family for my husband to be admitted to the hospital the day before the holiday. I wanted to be sure my husband would get well, and I knew how excited our children were for the holiday. I wanted to be there for them all, but I later saw how my children were there for me.
I was contemplating in my mind how to make the holiday special for the kids in keeping my promise, but more importantly I wanted to ensure my husband’s needs at the time. My husband and I have a system in place that we follow to keep things as normal as possible for our children following his admittance for a hospital stay.
I was exhausted from a late night of racing thoughts the night of his admittance. I went to the store the following morning for the big day of lights, fireworks, and red, white, and blue to pick up a few things for the day. I saw the pile of laundry waiting to be sorted before we left the house. I was even more popped when we returned following the enduring search for reasonable priced fireworks, Sweet Baby Ray Bar-B-Que sauce, and the perfect watermelon in the drain of long check out lines. I pulled in the garage totting a few shopping bags. I went back to get the rest, but saw my daughter had already got them out. She quietly begin to put up the groceries up. I fixed lunch for the kids, and sat down thinking of how to orchestrate the plan for the day. I looked with weary mom eyes in the kitchen. I saw that the kids not only put their plates up, but they wiped down the table. I heard my son tell my daughter “Let’s help mama by sorting out the clothes basket.” They both preceded to set the clothes in the right plies in attempting to fold. No, it may not have been the “perfect” fold. Yes, they cackled beyond their inside voices in playful laughter, but they were doing their best to lend a helping hand.
A wise older woman once told me if your children want to help let them in anyway, and don’t discourage them because of your desire for perfection in them not doing things the way you do it. I was grateful and very proud of their initiative in being of support in their little way. My husband was later released from the hospital, and we had a great 4th of July inspite of. My son gave me a hug while watching the local firework display for which we are blessed to see from our neighborhoods and said” This was a great 4th of July mama!” I felt great in having some thoughtful kiddos in my life to call me their mother.