Two kids, carpool, cooking, cleaning, breaking up fights: Most moms can relate when I say that by the time I nearly pass out in my bed at 11:30 p.m., I’m not focused on changing the world. Rather, I’m thinking about how I’m going to get through breakfast the next day and get everyone out the door wearing underwear (which are, hopefully, clean).
But every once in a while, I reflect on the future at night and realize that my job is to get everyone through the day, but I also have to build time in to build their character. Can I get a couple more hours added to the 24, please?
Lately, I’ve had a few of those nights when I developed more awareness for my important role as a parent. One of those happened when I watched Caitlyn Jenner at the ESPYS this summer. She said that people might doubt her intentions, but her goal in life is to “help people accept others for who they are and accept people’s differences in order to make this world a better place.”
Who can argue with that? What parent doesn’t want a tolerant, accepting, kind world for the future generation? It’s a shame that it takes a celebrity to remind us/me to teach our kids to be nice. But, if that’s what people respond, bring it. If parents in this world are shirking their responsibilities, I’m OK with relying on some famous folks to help make this world a better place.
Let’s keep it going and find someone who’ll stand up for all those kids like my sisters who are “different,” misunderstood and teased because they have Asperger’s, or my own daughter who is teased because she owns nothing pink and plays football. How about the kids who are overweight? Or those with Down syndrome? Will someone stand up for them, and remind everyone in the world to stop judging and be kind? Be kind. Be kind. Be kind.
We need to keep the conversation going that different is more than OK. Different is good. We’re all different and imperfect.
No need to schedule a family conference and get the Power Point and laser pen going (I’m a type A person, and this appeals to me, but, um, to no one else in my family). As one of my dear friends reminded me, leading by example is the best thing we can do as parents, in addition to teaching simple lessons when appropriate as we go through our daily motions.
I’m going to admit that I judge people. I’m bad at that, and I hate it. What’s the point? What a waste of time. Today, I’m going to work harder not to judge. I hope it carries over to tomorrow and the next day and the next. Why? It’s because Caitlyn Jenner reminded me to accept, respect and love.
Tonight, I’m ditching the laundry, picking up fast food, and horrors upon horrors, probably not giving my kids a bath. I’m just going to embrace my wonderful, different kiddos, possibly throw in a casual discussion on how we’re all different and how it’s a wonderful thing… and do my little part in this world today to eradicate bullies, mean girls, mean boys and haters of all kind, one day at a time. My kids deserve it, your kids deserve it and so does our world.