Kids Change Everything

Sometimes it’s nice to do nothing. That thought hit me at around 2:30 on a Sunday afternoon while sitting outside watching a bird. He was sitting on top of the birdhouse calling for a girlfriend. I had just emerged from my office after working all morning. Isa had only recently returned from helping Sabrina with our social skills classes.

I can’t remember the last day I didn’t work. Not that I always work all day. But I do some amount of work every day. And sometimes I work more than I sleep. I’ve been told that it’s not healthy to do so.

Funny how things change when you have kids.

Before Maya came along I had chill’n down to a rare art. I worked a lot, or at least I thought I did. But then Maya came along. Now there is a whole new sense of urgency. “Don’t put off until tomorrow what can be done today” has taken on a whole new meaning.

How did your sense of urgency change when your first child arrived?

Did you find yourself working longer or working harder so your child could have a better life? Did you start reading about how to parent? Did you suddenly become interested in vaccines, schools and toy safety? Or are you one of those parents who managed to go unfazed after childbirth?

I’ve known some of those parents. I’m sure you have too. You see this in the celebrities on TV. You know the ones. Some are still going to clubs. All are still doing the same things they’ve always done.

Bottom line is they are more concerned with themselves than what is best for their children. Sure they’d argue they’re just as concerned as everyone else. But actions speak louder than words.

Supposedly those parents aren’t as common now as they were with the early boomer parents. But it does seem to be more common than it was in the so-called Greatest Generation. Of course the downside of that generation was that dads were not as involved.

That’s a nice progression that’s happening in our society. Dad’s being more involved. Sometimes taking the lead role and often taking a balanced role.

We see a lot of that. And from our admittedly anecdotal observation, those families seem much happier.

We’re fortunate to be involved in the lives of so many parents. And their efforts never cease to amaze me. Some drive over an hour each way several times a week to come to therapy. Many drive in excess of thirty minutes each way. Some have had traumatic life-changing events in their lives and still managed to not miss a day of therapy.

I often wonder if I would have the courage to face what some of our parents face. I wonder if I faced the same challenges if I could be as dedicated. I don’t know.

Of course doing what’s right for your child is what parenting is all about. It’s not always an easy task. Decisions can be tough. By definition sacrifices are not easy. But as long as we put their needs first, we’ll all end up in the right place.

Posted in

Jason Marrs

Jason Marrs is the Director of Research and Awareness for the Where I Can Be Me® social skills program. Read More