Friday, October 4, 2013

This Part of Parenting

While walking to school one day last week...
Aiden: Mommy, you know that the earth is spinning around so slowly that we can't even feel it spinning? You know that?
Me: Oh yeah?
Aiden: Yes. See! *Stands still for about three seconds* We can't even feel it!
Me: I see.
Aiden: The only way we could feel the earth spinning is if we spin around and around and get dizzy. THEN we could feel the earth spinning. 
This is Aiden. Very funny. Very curious. Very much a critical thinker. Very much a seasoned and quirky five-year-old.

He's turning six this month, and I've been spending a lot of time reflecting on motherhood and raising Aiden and growing pains. 

apple picking
I spend a lot of time thinking about how I'm raising him, the values I'm instilling in him, and the greatness I'm trying to steer him towards. I spend a lot of time thinking of the non-academic skills I'm trying to develop in him -- optimism and kindness, grit and resilience, joyfulness and a strong work ethic.

I spend a lot of time planning activities for him -- exposing him to different people, places, and experiences.

I spend a lot of time talking to his teachers and people educating him to be sure that he gets what he needs from them to be his best self everyday. I spend a lot of time thinking about the best educational setting for him and making sure that he gets it. 

I spend a lot of time telling him that he has to use his voice to do what's right and that his voice matters. I tell him that he needs to remain calm, cool, and collected when he's speaking because that's how he'll be able to command attention from others.

He listens. Sometimes. (But he forgets sometimes too. After all, he's five.)

I spend a lot of time wrestling with this part of parenting. The part no one tells you about -- the planning and plotting and worrying and advocating and fixing things (or showing your child how to fix things). No one tells you about the incredible amount of patience and practice and pep talks and preparation that it takes to raise a child into a socially-competent, self-sufficient, well-adjusted adult. 

But I think about it. Often. (I blame single motherhood and all the statistics that I read about it. Sigh!)

But, something happened as we were walking to his school that morning and having a conversation about the earth's rotation, which Aiden initiated, by the way.

I realized something: I already have a pretty great kid so all I need to do is keep doing what I'm doing.
As the quote by Glennon Melton reminded me, "Don't let yourself become so concerned with raising a good kid that you forget you already have one."

This single mom journey has been a beautiful struggle thus far -- a lot more ups than downs and a lot more successes and lessons learned than I ever thought possible.

All is well. And Aiden will be just fine.


  1. I had to realize this myself. Kids are going to be kids. They're not going to be perfect but if nurtured and given the right role models, they'll turn out just fine for the most part. I'm really trying to stop overthinking my parenting skills and just focus more being confident that I'm doing the right things and setting the right examples.

    Single mom or not, you're doing a fantastic with raising Aiden to be a responsible, caring, and compassionate individual!

  2. I am glad you realized what a stellar mom you are and that you are raising an awesome kid! Mom with partners worry about this stuff too constantly. and it's not any easier because there are two of you, especially when you might disagree on how to parent in a certain situation.

  3. So true! Thanks for sharing! ~Carla

  4. i love the curiosity that children bring into our perceptive of him!!


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