First published in 1987, Dr. James Dobson wrote Parenting Isn’t for Cowards: Dealing Confidently With the Frustrations of Child-Rearing. It looks like he wrote an updated version for the new millennium in 2010.
I don’t know about you, but I think I’m a parenting coward.
Funny thing, though.
I used to have it figured out.
I studied family dynamics, human development, and elementary education when I was in college. By the time I got out, I was certain that I would never (n-e-v-e-r!) give my child candy in a grocery store or mall. No, I wouldn’t even allow my child to have candy–ever.
I would never use the TV as a babysitter, and I took the parental oath in the delivery room that I would never allow my child to have more than 2 hours of daily screen time–based on advise of educational researchers. (After taking the oath, the delivery nurse handed over the baby…jk–I made that up.)
Which takes me to the illustrious start of a new school year.
Every year I gaze at kids in adorable first-day-of-school clothes on Facebook. More often than not, even more adorable than the kids are the Pin-worthy signs that the children/teens are holding.
My kid adamantly refused to be in one of those pictures. I promised not to put her on Facebook. I promised her all the candy that she could possibly eat when it was done. I promised that she could hold a cute chalkboard sign that I personally made with my own withering fingers.
And she put her foot down.
But not quite.
She finally allowed me to take a snapshot of her sitting on the sofa, tying her bright red Converse tennis shoes, her backpack and gaggle of musical instruments in the background.
I’ll take what I can get, okay? Judge me if you must…but shhhhhhhhhh! I’m secretly going to post her picture on FB. There it is, in black and white at the top of this post.