I’m proud of my kids most of the time. The older one is a slob and the younger one argues too much, but other than that I think they’re pretty awesome guys. Some of my proudest mom moments are when they learn important things on their own. You know – the things that they learn by spending time with someone who sets a good example, or by making their own mistakes and learning from them, or just by being open-minded when they have new experiences. As opposed to lessons that require yelling and shaking them by the scruff of the neck like a mama cat (i.e. “If something has blooms on it and I mulch around it do NOT mow it down!”).
This week Aaron, my nineteen-year-old, has been learning a lesson. It’s one of those simple things that we, as adults, take for granted, but I’m proud that he’s insightful enough to be ahead of the game on this particular concept. He’s working for a pizza delivery restaurant this summer, and due to some staffing shortages he’s been working forty to forty-five hours a week. He’d started the summer working part-time and had been spending his spare time working out – doing the Insanity workout plan that’s so popular right now. He’s in fabulous shape, and he’s been enjoying seeing the progress he’s made in just a few weeks. But this week he confided to me that trying to maintain a work out schedule while working this many hours is really hard. Yes, I see that grin on your face. He said that he was too tired to work out after getting home after work, and that he didn’t like getting up extra-early to work out. Is that grin getting wider? He and I talked for a while about the demands on the time of the average adult in our culture: working full-time, raising children, cleaning house, cooking, running errands, taking care of your house, yard, and car. How do any of us have time to take care of ourselves? I’d like to think I’ve set a good example of how to balance work, family, and self-care . . . but I know I haven’t. I hope that Aaron will do a better job than I have done, and I suspect that he will since he identified this problem much earlier in his life than I did. Because sometimes it’s the simple things that make all the difference.
I’m linking this up for Wordful Wednesday at Parenting by Dummies, Seven Clown Circus, and Tough Cookie Mommy. And by the way, if you don’t already follow her blog you really should – she’s not afraid to speak her mind and tackle the tough issues. Plus, she’s the sort of teacher I always pray my kids get. I’ll also be linking up to Mama Kat’s Writers’ Workshop for the “simple things” prompt.