Feb 22, 2012

The Long Haul On Being A Parent Lost In The Forest

No Idea Who This Is.... A Flying Squirrel Perhaps

This weekend took the hubster (that's hipster for husband) and I on a whirlwind 22 hour round trip car ride in little more than 24 hours. Yeah, not sure if that math works out, but trust me it seemed like eternity.
And that was before we got lost... took a detour through The Mark Twain National Forest.
If you are ever thinking of going, call me first. I can give you some pointers. Take food, water, camo and a banjo so you can play along with the locals to Deliverance tunes and don't worry about your cell phone, unless you want to use it as a weapon.
The terrain is lovely to look at it, but after 15 minutes you swear you already drove by that mountain lion, grizzly bear or flying squirrel.
I tried to get the hubster to pull over so we could stretch our legs... instead he locked the doors and mumbled something under his breath.
Seriously? The daughter needed us.... and we were driving around lost.

This trip was necessary....
You see
The lovely daughter 
was in need 
new wheels.
It wasn't her doing, but that of the young gun who decided to drive his car into hers on super bowl sunday. 
Maybe he was trying to get her attention.
It got her dad's attention.
No doubt in a hurry to see his team... (hopefully lose). Go Giants!
We had found a vehicle that fit into the desires of her heart.... 
Since she was 12 she wanted this vehicle.
One had been located.
She never thought she could have it, but voila..... like pennies from heaven,
good things were coming her way.
and like a good neighbor, our Insurance Company came through.

We made our plans for travel.
I asked the hubster if we could fly? 
He looked at me like I was blonde (I have been) and 
reminded me we were leaving in 19 hours...
Okay, okay.....

We met the darling girl, made the purchase and went on to spend the next 8 hours in her town....
So much to do, see, shop and visit....
We were tired.
The husband took a nap.... a three hour nap...
I can't help but see Gilligan and hear "a three hour tour" playing in my head.
Yea, he got lost alright.
The male gene kicked in and he was snoozing.

Later that evening our son made it back into town after his three day track meet and we sat down to dinner at 9:45.
My daughter turned to me and said something about her friends thinking we were crazy. She said they meant it in a good way...
Crazy to make this drive...
She said, "I guess you take this parenting thing seriously and you are going to see it through to the end."

Well, that's always been our plan.

And where exactly is the end of parenting?
When I leave this earth I imagine.
A helicopter parent I am not.
 I pushed my kids away from me when it came to college choices, away from home.
That was not my heart choice, but still the right choice.

We gave them wings to fly, and after we push them out of the nest, they make the choices.
They choose the grades, the friends, the decisions.
They know we will always help them....
We have also let them fail...
They know we will not fight their battles or clean up their messes.
We will encourage them, direct them and even advocate in situations that are appropriate.

We will always be their parents and we will drive the miles and be the support system that we were called to be when we became parents.
Parenting doesn't end, but it does change.
We stand by now.... instead of in front of.
They do not need us to block them from harm. They are adults... and my what lovely adults they are becoming.
I say that, not out of pride, but out of thankfulness, gratefulness, heart overflowing.... to God.
He gave us these two people to help mold, but they are not ours... never were. They are His and we are blessed to be their earthly parents.
I am so thankful they know their Heavenly Father is the One who will never get lost or take a detour. 

Ephesians 6:1 Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right. 2 "Honor your father and mother "--which is the first commandment with a promise-- 3 "that it may go well with you and that you may enjoy long life on the earth." 4 Fathers, do not exasperate your children; instead, bring them up in the training and instruction of the Lord.

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