Google+ Followers

Thursday, June 27, 2013

Parenting 101 - Love Your Children Unconditionally


I’ve often wondered how we managed to raise such a smart daughter.  She is so much smarter than I ever was at her age.  She makes good choices.  She has good friends.  She loves deeply and honestly.  

She and I had a conversation recently about some of the other girls her age that we know who are so eager to be in relationships.  Girls who think having sex on the first date is normal.  Girls who feel like their life is incomplete if they don’t have a boyfriend.  

I was one of those girls.  Started dating a boy at age 14.  Believed him when he said we’d be together forever, making choices that I was so not ready for.  When that relationship ended, I spent the next few years feeling like I was un-lovable.  Then came the years of going from one relationship to the next, hoping every time that this would be the one to love me enough to marry me.  When one finally did want to marry me, I jumped at the chance only to find out he really wasn’t Mr. Right.  

It wasn’t until I learned to love myself that I was open to accepting that someone else could love me as well.

So as M and I discussed why she is so different, why she doesn’t feel the need for a boy in her life constantly, we figured it out.  She loves the person she is already.  She doesn’t need someone else to make her feel loved.

And why is that?

Because we’ve always loved the person she is, and we’ve told her so.  We’ve always allowed her to be her own person, shaping herself in her own way, but always with us as the safety net to catch her when she falls.  Because she knows what unconditional love is, she knows what she wants in a relationship and is willing to wait for it.

How amazing is that?

It’s a rare thing for me to pat myself on the back for anything, but this time I feel it is in order.  Mike and I raised an amazing young woman.  We had no clue what we were doing, but we still managed to get it right.

Go us!

Talk Talk Talk


I think everyone has something that they would like to change about themselves.  Some of us have many things we’d like to change.  My list would probably fill a legal pad, but most of my “fixes” are either impossible (be taller) or out of my price range (tummy tuck/face lift/boob job).  There is one thing on that list, however, that is well within my capability to fix - for free! - and yet I just can’t seem to fix it.

I talk too much.

I know it is true because I’ve been told it my entire life.  Parents, sibling, teachers, bosses.  

“Shannon, be quiet.”

“Do you ever shut up?”

“Shannon is a talker.”

“How do you ever get anything done when you’re always talking?”

My husband is a talker also, but not nearly as bad as I am.  When we were first dating, a friend of ours asked how we ever managed to get a word in.  

::insert eye roll here::
In my 46 years of being told I talk too much, I’ve probably made 46,000 vows to stop doing it.  I’ve failed every single time.

I tend to be at my chattiest when I am in social situations with people I am unfamiliar with.  I’m not the most social person to begin with.  I like being in my own home, with my husband and daughter, maybe a couple friends over for drinks.  I’m chatty then, but not the full on diahrrea-of-the-mouth as my mother used to call it.  But put me in someone else’s house, with people I’ve never met, and I become so hyper-aware of feeling like an outsider that I start to talk.  Incessantly.

I bring up this whole topic because I did it last night at a new friend’s house.  I had met one other person there, but I didn’t really know her.  Everyone else was new to me.  So what did I do?  

Talk, talk, talk talk talk talk talk talk talk talk talk talk talk talk talk talk talk talk talk talk talk talk . . . talk talk talk talk talk talk talk talk talk talk talk talk talk talk talk . . . talk talk talk talk talk talk talk talk talk talk talk talk talk talk talk . . .

The worst part about it is the talk-hangover I wake up with the next day.  The feeling of embarrassment because I yammered on and on all evening.  The brain pain from trying to remember everything I said.  The dread that I now feel over seeing any of these women again because of my embarrassment, which is made worse by the fact that a couple of them work in the same building as my husband.

Yes, I know.  I’m probably over-thinking it.  It doesn’t matter though.

Vow 46,0001 has now been made.