“They grow up so fast.”
“You better enjoy them while you can.”
“They will be gone before you know it.”
That’s what old parents like me say to young parents.
I’m not really sure why.
It’s probably because that’s what someone said to us when our kids were young.
So we feel like we are responsible to pass it along.
One day I am fully expecting a young mom or dad to respond with. . .
“Actually I wish they would grow up a little faster.”
or “No. I haven’t enjoyed them at all today.”
or “That’s sad. Why can’t they go somewhere now?”
Okay, so maybe no parent would dare say that out loud.
But what is a parent supposed to
when someone makes them feel like time is running out with their kids?
Admit it. Don’t you sometimes feel like it’s just another way of saying. . .
“You better get your act together as a parent because you’re running out of time. The future of your children is coming like a freight train, and if you’re not careful you will miss out on what’s important and mess them up for the rest of their life.”
Maybe the next time an older parent says something like that to you, you should drop to your knees, grab them around the leg and burst into tears. Then ask them, “Oh no, how did you know that? Please tell me what am I supposed to do?”
Okay, that may be a little too dramatic. But the point is time is moving faster than many of us realize. Somewhere there is a clock counting down the number of weeks you have left with your kids before they move on. If you stop to think about it, a lot can happen in a single week!
Here’s a list of possible milestones for a child growing up today:
|Stays up all night||week 2|
|Throws mashed peas||week 35|
|Flushes valuables||week 70|
|Connects words||week 80|
|Brushes teeth||week 90|
|Colors the walls||week 110|
|Goes on the potty||week 130|
|Begins Kindergarten||week 260|
|Gets visited by the Tooth Fairy||week 338|
|Loses training wheels||week 364|
|Brings homework you don’t understand||week 416|
|Stops believing in Santa||week 468|
|Rolls eyes||week 468|
|Outgrows the kids menu||week 494|
|Wears deoderant||week 520|
|Starts thinking they’re smarter than you||week 572|
|Enters Middle School||week 572|
|Gets braces||week 597|
|Stays up all night||week 624|
|Legally posts on Facebook||week 676|
|Starts High School||week 728|
|Asks to date||week 728|
|Gets first paycheck||week 806|
|Is allowed to date||week 832|
|Takes the SAT||week 858|
|Visits colleges||week 884|
|Graduates High School||week 936|
Considering the potential of what can happen in a week, let’s spend this next week on Orange Parents thinking about how to simplify the daunting task of 936 weeks of parenting our kids through childhood. What if we started thinking about how to parent just one week at a time?
First, what milestones would you add to this list?