Dear MotionWorks Family,
It’s been a delightful school year, but my kids and everyone else’s could not be happier that school is out! Backyards are finally busy in the neighborhood, teeming with kids and pets from all over playing pick up soccer and basketball games, swimming, and bike and scooter riding. With the end of the school year comes graduations, with big backyard parties re-gaining some popularity this year.
All of these graduations and kids preparing to leave for college stories have me thinking alot about parenting. Not complaining about it, not debating parenting styles of toddlers, not mom guilt, no, actually good or even great parenting! I see evidence of it all around me.
Neighbor kids who can have conversations with adults. They even run businesses. I think we have more kid entrepreneurs than adult entrepreneurs in our growing neighborhood, providing services ranging from dog walking, house sitting, landscaping and lawncare, in addition to the usual babysitting and lemonade stands. It’s really great to see. Kids who understand that you get paid for doing work. And that you can even pick what kind of work, and it can actually be fun and enjoyable.
My kids may grumble when I ask them to help clean the house and fold their laundry, but they too are learning that while we work sometimes to get paid, sometimes we do work just so there are clean clothes we can wear in our drawers, and so we have a tasty dinner to eat. It works both ways, this work thing.
In and out of the neighborhood I’ve been most heartened by meeting kids who understand respect, authority, and responsibility. As we get really busy running our kids here, there, and everywhere, sometimes they take for granted what it takes to run a household, because they aren’t even home to see the work, time and money it takes to live and maintain a home and yard. Kids who do see this and participate in it, gain the mature outlook that life is not about simply fulfilling yourself in all that you do, but rather working together for a common good. Respecting leaders, volunteering, and showing up on time. Life skills and common sense that can’t be taught in school; they have to come from mom and dad.
So congratulations to the new grads! Better yet, congratulations moms and dads! The sacrifices you have made, and the morals and values you have taken careful time and attention to nurture are finally paying off. And if you don’t quite see yet that your graduate has it all together and is ready for the “real world,” I’m surely seeing it. Tall shoulders, looking people in the eye eager for the future, but realistic in the hard work it will take- great job Mom and Dad! Now get out there and celebrate!
Celebrating with you!
Dr. Jill Murphy
MotionWorks Physical Therapy