I don’t need to tell you that with small children no two days are the same; everything that happens is a new adventure as much for them as it is for us moms and dads that watch, stupefied by the natural abilities of these magic-filled munchkins – magic pee-pees, magic poo-poos, magic candle-lit nights… – our household happiness.
Yesterday at 3:45 in the afternoon, I left work to go get my children. I have a sacred rule that guides my agendas, meetings, classes, shopping, cleaning and as many other things as possible: Go get my two little chicks from school.
So I took my car-office-warehouse-taxi-daycare-vehicle from the supermarket, I sat myself in front of the wheel, I felt the crunch beneath my feet (why does the rug in the car always crunch?) and I considered the possibility of staying seated for five more minutes: aaaaah. I put the key in, started the car, left from the lot and pulled the seat belt on to find myself in the wonderful traffic jam that allows me to deal with late afternoon calls from work without the background noise of kids screaming. It seems crazy, but I need these scraps of time to be able to take care of all of my daily obligations.
To my astonishment, there was not even one call, which allowed me to do something quite unusual: Reflect. Reflect on the life of all parents like myself.
Are we doing it right? Do our children need more attention than we give them? How do we live in this constant state of stress? Is it worth it to go to such lengths to promise them a future? …. Or should we focus ourselves in the present and leave work outside of the house at the risk of disrupting the family finances? My God. I have to debate this with intelligent people that find themselves in the same situation.
When I arrived at school, I rushed to my two loves, hugging them, smelling them, patting their hair, kissing them; being the mother bear that I am while my cubs told me things with their eyes wide open and huges smiles. After the “Documentary from Africa about the love that mother elephants give to her babies” moment, I returned to reality and got them in the car quickly, to get to their swim lessons on time, but as soon as they were in their seats, decided and proud, my independent children proceeded to start the process of buckling their seat belts all by themselves, just as their dad and I had implored them to do ever since they could remember.
At that very moment, the calls that I had been waiting for began to sound, one after another. I couldn’t answer with the kids talking up a storm, and if we didn’t get going, we would be late to class.
¿What to do with my slow and loud creatures?
Do I fasten their seat belts and quiet them to be able to attend to my suppliers in silence while I drive to the pool? Or do I leave the work calls and my rigorous punctuality and dedicate myself with love and patience to encouraging my little ones in their effort to do things for themselves…? I fear the correct answer is the second one, but I also fear that I will end up opting for the more practical option, which is without a doubt the first. What do you do in this situation? That’s the question.
Andrea Zazurca is a mom of two very interested in children self-reliance. Her readings and meetings with experts and the need to find the tools that would help her, led to the creation of Little champions brand, together with her business partner and future rocket mom, Magda.
During her scarce free time, she writes these short articles to share them with other parents, grandparents or childcare responsibles in similar situations, to debate them and to help each other with their mutual experiences and diverse viewpoints.