Today The Stir has an article on 16 Things Elizabeth Edwards’ Children Need to Know. As a mom, thinking of leaving my son behind is absolutely heartbreaking. Not seeing his high school graduation, meeting his first love (so I can embarass him), seeing what he looks like as a man, all are unimagineable. More importantly, not being able to pass on my thoughts, opinions, and “wisdom” to him and not being certain if he will be raised my way is even scarier.
So to all those loved ones who read this blog and are a part of Matthew’s life, here are my top 10 instructions for how to raise the stinker…
1. God is who you need him/her to be. Please be sure that Matthew continues to understand that each of us have our own personal relationship with the divine and no one has a right to say which way is the only way because there is no one correct way.
2. Stop worrying about who or what is better and enjoy diversity and difference. This goes for superheroes, gender, race, ethnicity, and everything else he puts into his constant competition for what is best. Remind him of this often.
3. Never let fear stop you from standing up for someone. Matthew often finds himself in trouble for stepping into fights at school so he can help a friend. I shrug these off because I am so incredibly proud of him for helping the underdog. I hope he keeps it up. Please forgive these instances.
4. You can’t be perfect, you can only be your best you. Please remind him that he needs to work hard and make his best choices, but he never, ever has to be perfect.
5. Music is important, it feeds your soul. Matthew sings. I love it. He sings in the shower, he sings in the car, he sings when he is sitting on the pot. He also plays guitar and it is essential that there always be a musical outlet in his life. It is part of his soul.
6. Don’t worry about looking like a fool, just dance. The kid can dance and loves to entertain us with those dance moves. I fear what teen peer pressure will do to this trait.
7. There can never be too many LEGOS. Really, that one is pretty simple.
8. You can never be too old for hugs. Make him hug the people he loves, even if he is 16 and too cool. Everyone needs hugs.
9. Farting isn’t funny. This will need to be stated often and for the rest of his life (he is a guy after all).
10. Books are magic. Have books around, read to him, have him read to you, spend hours at the library and Barnes and Noble.
And the 11th and most important
You are loved. Just tell him that often.
- My name is Jacki and I am a divorced, Pagan mom trying to raise a son in a blended interfaith family. At The Raven's Spell you will find musings on motherhood, spirituality, divorce, and the blending of families. If you enjoy what you read, please be sure to find a way to follow.
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