Pride and Parenting

elizabethside

I have been thinking very hard the last couple weeks about writing about my proudest parenting moment.  It is so easy to wrap up one's self worth with one's children's accomplishments.  Sure, I tell my kids I am proud of them, but I am acutely aware of that fine line when a parent starts to take ownership of their child's successes.  There is a point at which it becomes boastful.

And yet.  My kids did something a couple weeks ago.  I don't think I have ever been so proud in all my life, and I don't want to ever forget the heart swell I feel right now as I think about it.  And so I need to write it down here, where I can reference it and take myself back to the moment and it can punctuate our family values for them (because this is after all their favourite storybook).

Yes, it's another somber post.

For me at a funeral, its the burial that always gets me.  I think it has something to do with the finality of it.  Everything is rush, rush, rush, thank you, sorry, move right along through the rituals and then the burial happens and it all stops.  There is no busy-ness to distract.  I don't think I am the only one who feels it all at that moment.

My uncle has lived with my Gram his entire life.  For almost fifteen years, it has been just the two of them, taking care of each other.  Although everyone present felt the loss deeply, no one felt it as profoundly as my uncle.  When it was time for us to trudge through the snow back to our car, we walked past my uncle.  Nevin, my shy boy who hates intimacy and intrusion, stopped in front of him and looked up at his face.  He took off his glove and shook my uncle's hand.  My breath caught.  My uncle shifted his attention to Scarlett, just behind her brother.  He held out his hands to her in polite invitation.  She looked way up at him, took two running strides and bounded into his arms.  She hugged him tight and didn't let him go until he was ready.  I think she whispered, "I love you."

My children.  My tender, sweet, loving children.  I didn't and couldn't have expected them to give such love and kindness during a difficult time.  Honestly, we promised them a MacDonald's lunch with dessert in exchange for no bickering or complaining during the funeral and thought we came out winners.  Who knew they were capable of such humanity?  My children are beautiful.  I am so proud.


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