I never thought I would become one of those parents. But here I am, absolutely GUILTY of living vicariously through my kid. The picture that comes to mind whenever I usually thought about such a thing, is the overweight, out of shape, former jock Dads who scream and yell at their kids until they are all red-faced and angry on the sidelines, looking like lunatics. And what about the Step-ford type moms who coach their daughters in how to look and act just like them, turning their spawn into evil, mean girl cheerleader clones of themselves. So, how in the world, could someone like me be so guilty of living vicariously through my kid?
As I sit here, typing this I am so excited I can barely contain myself, I am so proud of my kid! Why? It's not at all because my kid is so athletic or beautiful, (which she totally is, despite me being her mother)it's because her teacher chose her and her short story to be sent to the Young Author's Conference! Ha, how's that for irony? I never thought this would creep up and bite me in the ass, but WHOOP there it is! I'm so excited you'd think she just got chosen to win a Pulitzer! Hmmm, maybe that will be in her future one day...And, I'm off. Guilty again. Just this tiny recognition of her creativity sent my thoughts off the charts and into outer space.
I began to imagine all kinds of awesome things for her/my future in writing. I had thoughts of us writing a mother/daughter series, thoughts of us attending writer's conferences all over the country together, thoughts of us commiserating when either of us couldn't nail down a scene just right, etc. To state it plainly, I lost my flippin' mind. I am no better than those I had formerly abhorred! How could this have happened to me?
When she came home and told me, I felt this little bubble of excitement well up inside me and then this scream just flew out of my mouth. I actually frightened her, she was so shocked. The Husband just shook his head and walked away, completely convinced once and for all I've lost what is left of my dang mind. I just couldn't help myself. Writing can be so solitary sometimes and to think I could share my passion with my daughter, I was overcome with emotion! I couldn't wait to read her story... My chest actually grew tight in anticipation. What if it wasn't any good? What would I do or say? OMG! I was dying. Thank the Lord, I loved it!! Like Love, Love, LOVED IT! It was creative and witty and funny and wonderful and I'm amazed and so proud of her I could cry..
How did I not see this coming? And how do I deal with it, now that it's here? How do you keep your cool when everything inside you is screaming for her to be successful. Not only to be successful, but to go way beyond what I have achieved? IDK. I think I need a little more time to think about this and calm my crazy ass down. (I already had visions of myself hiding under the table at her conference and popping my head up to interject my own little helpful suggestions..muah)
In the meantime, the next time I find myself sitting next to the balding fatty screaming at his kid on the football field, I won't judge. I won't hate on him. I will close my eyes and pray that God will give me the strength to not live vicariously through my kid, and just be happy no matter what she chooses to do in this life. I'll pray He will give me the grace to not put undue pressure or stress on my kid to exceed my expectations. And I'll pray, maybe, just maybe, she will want to become a writer too...:)
I thought I'd let you all read her fable and let me know what YOU think about it. Cause I might be a little biased (he he he) Oh, and keep in mind she was only nine years old when she wrote this:
Larry the Ladybug
Hi. My name is Larry. And I'm a ladybug. Yeah, that's right, you heard me! I'm a ladybug and I'm a boy. Other bugs like to get on my case about it, but whatever. I like who I am and I like being a ladybug. My dad always taught me to be proud of who I am, no matter what other people say.
Now, let me tell you a couple of reasons why I'm so proud of being a ladybug. Did you know boy ladybugs have been sent into space? Oh yeah, we have! Did you know that all over the world, ladybugs are thought of as good luck charms? Well, guess what? It's true!
Ladybugs are wish granters.
Wherever I go, little children pick me up and make a wish. Then they throw me back into the wind and I fly. (By the way, flying is awe-some!) I fly wherever I need to go to make their wishes come true. Sometimes, it takes me far, far away from home. But, don't worry about me, the wind is my friend and no matter how far I go, he always carries me back home.
My home, is a fabulous rose garden that smells so sweet. My mom and my sassy little sisters wait there for me to come back from my missions. Being a wish granter is an amazing job and I wouldn't want to trade it for anything. I love my life. So, the next time you see a ladybug, think of me and pick it up. Gently, please! Make a wish and remember, not all ladybugs are girls, some ladybugs are boys and some are even named Larry!