Saturday, July 7, 2012

Bridget Jones Teaches Me About Parenting

I hate it when my kids turn out to be smarter than me. I mean seriously, I really hate it. So tonight was particularly troubling and illuminating when after ripping into my son for the thirtieth time that day about something he was doing that I didn’t like, he said this to me: “You know Mommy, back when there was nobody in this town and just me, G-d handed me a magazine and said pick one. And I picked Daddy and I picked you Mommy, not for any other reason but because of who you are.” I looked at him, and promptly bawled my eyes out.

I guess this is really my Bridget Jones post – right? You know the infamous line from Mark Darcy to a downhearted Bridget after a disastrous dinner party: “I like you very much. Just as you are.” My son loves me for who I am. And at the tender age of four he is smart enough to know that there is pretty much nothing better for anyone at any time or age to hear. In that moment I realized the single biggest thing I needed to do and wasn’t doing for my kid: telling him that I love him just as he is. No IF clause or AND clause or WHEN clause. I think as parents (and by parents I’m talking specifically about my own ineptitude here) that we obsess a lot about what we need to DO to make our kids good people, as if there is some sort of action-oriented set of verbs that parents can use to produce kind souls and open hearts. But I’m pretty sure Dylan and Mark Darcy reminded me tonight that’s not really how it all works. We are who we are, frailties and all. And sometimes the very best we can do is remind each other that we are loved because, not in spite of those things.
So Dylan, hey listen up: I love you kid. I’m not sure how I got so damn lucky to have you pick me out of that magazine but I promise to thank G-d everyday for it. And I love you. Just as you are.

2 comments:

  1. Good one! I am totally gonna tell me kids today that I love them just the way they are.

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  2. Beautiful concept of picking your parents from a cosmic magazine. Kids are so intuitive and wise.

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