Throwing an idea out here.
Nate is a pretty easy kid. I mean really. He has his moments, of course as all kids do. But compared to my blond children, raising him is a piece of cake. He's easygoing - mostly. He's quick to apologize. If he's upset, he gets quiet (instead of having a tantrum) and you can talk him through it pretty rationally. I often think to myself that if it wasn't for him, I would seriously question my parenting.
So, it occurred to me the other day, that it would be easy for parents that only have kids like Nate to judge parents like me that have kids like my wonderful, passionate, strongly opinionated, emotionally *volcanic* children.
In fact, one would almost expect it.
I probably would. I would try to understand. I would smile and try to be supportive. But inside, I'd be thinking that they could use some work on their parenting. If only they'd be consistent, they wouldn't have these problems. I mean, after all, look at my children... good parenting works.
You know, if all my kids were like that.
But they're not and quite frankly it's probably a very good thing that I've been taken off my self made pedestal and am trudging away in the parenting trenches like most everyone else out there.
Even in the trenches, I still judge. Quietly. Reluctantly. Trying to stop myself because I know full well there very well could be a good reason why that 8 year old in the booth behind us in Boston Pizza is wandering around and slithering on the floor throughout the meal. His mom did go get him out of the lounge about two minutes after he went in. There is some pretty lousy parenting out there, but it's just as likely that that mom was just doing her very best and was possibly trying to avoid a horrible scene. So we sat there all high and mighty because our 7 and 4 year olds were model restaurant patrons. And so was our 3 year old while she was busy... and then she wasn't. We rushed out of the restaurant before she had an all out meltdown, barely avoiding that humiliation.
My point is, all our kids are different. My parenting is by no means perfect. I can identify plenty of things every single day that I could improve upon and I question myself all the time. But I also know that if I had three kids that had Nate's temperament, my life would be much, much different.
And I would be turning my nose up at all those unruly kids out there lamenting the loss of good parenting in our generation.