Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Parenting: Just Wing It!

All I can say is, thank goodness for my goody-two-shoes kid.

Like mother, like daughter.

So I learned last night that one of the girls at our crazy sleepover Saturday night told Caroline that she didn't need to tell her mom everything.  The girl offering this tid-bit of information is the one who no longer lives in our neighborhood.  Thank goodness.  She's very mature for her age; a slick, mean-girl-in-training who is heavily influenced by an older brother and, in her younger years, a less than stable home life.

I've always felt a little uneasy around this girl and despite my better judgment, I agreed to allow her to sleepover.  Sometimes she's still a sweet girl, but sometimes the growing-too-fast side appears and who knows what sort of information she'll bestow upon Caroline and her friends, who for the most part, are still innocent and completely oblivious to the ways of the world.

Obviously telling someone they don't have to tell their mom everything is innocuous in the grand scheme of things.  She could have offered up something much more salacious, which would give cause for copious amounts of damage control.  And not to mention, leaving me red faced and flailing about, trying to use the right words, as opposed to over reacting and making things worse.  In our case, a quick reminder that we're supposed to do what we know is right, according to our parents, according to the law and according to God, even when we're encouraged to do otherwise, was all that needed to be said.

Caroline didn't tell me any of this, but the other sleep over participants told their mom, who then told me.  When I approached Caroline about it, she said it was because I told them they couldn't put whipped cream on the face of the first girl who fell asleep.  Caroline told them I said no and the other girl told her they should just do it and not tell me.  Like I wouldn't find the remains of an empty whipped cream bottle or even worse, caked on dried whipped cream on my furniture.

Thankfully, Caroline held her ground.

Or, perhaps they all forgot about it during their obnoxiously loud sing along to the song stylings of one Justin Bieber?

All I know is that even on a good day I feel wholly unqualified to be a parent.   Factor in the outside influences of children who have been taught a looser set of morals than I'm trying to instill in Caroline and I find myself even less qualified.  And entirely out of my league.

Sometimes I think I have a handle on things; other times I literally close my eyes, cross my fingers and simply hope for the best. 

Perhaps I should write a book about it?   I can picture it now......Parenting:  Just Wing It!

Poor Caroline.  She deserves SO much better!



Carrie said...

I think the fact that Caroline stood her ground and didn't succumb to peer pressure shows that you're a GREAT parent. I'm not sure I could have been that strong at her age.

Wingin Mama said...

I'm 56, my oldest kid is (ahem) going to be 35 this year....and I'm still not sure how to parent!
I think we all just basically wing it.

I think it was Ray who once said, "God is the only perfect parent--and look at how screwed up His kids are!"
There's mercy enough for us all.

Alison said...

Thanks, Carrie. Caroline is a pretty good kid, which means I don't have to try very hard to get her to behave. That works well for me because I'm no over achiever! Heh.

mom--um....yeah...thanks? :)

Ali said...

"wholly unqualified"? I think the fact that you didn't find whipped cream anywhere shows Caroline is doing just fine!

When I was in 1st grade - during a Girl Scout outing to make pizzas at a local pizzeria, one of the girls told us all the "fine" points of sexual relations... From a 1st grade perspective of course. We were all beyond horrified (not to mention our mothers!)

Somehow I still turned out OK though. ;) Caroline won't always be perfect. You won't always be perfect. You can only do the very best that you can do!