Parenting is one of the most difficult tasks ever undertaken by any human being. That being said, the rewards are just as great if a person embraces parenthood like it was meant to be embraced. The only issue is that parenthood starts out all cute and cuddly, but no one seems to look beyond the infant stages and the struggles that come with aging children. No one expects that their child may be born with a physical or mental disability. No one can imagine losing their job and being homeless.
These are just a few of the issues facing modern-day parents. One story is quite appropriate on this topic during this time of year. It was by author Jon Walker. He wrote the following: ‘I’m sitting in a fast food restaurant observing a young girl celebrating an early Christmas with her mother. Her presents are spread out across the booth and she just said, “I miss you, Mommy.” “I miss you too, baby,” her mother says. Beyond the booth... a woman casually but carefully watches them. Using my journalist’s eye, I put it all together. The woman watching is a social worker supervising a structured visit for a mother and child who are doing their best to celebrate Christmas. A few minutes later foster parents arrive and take the little girl home. The mother leaves alone.
This is a sad situation any time of year, but during Christmas, it is especially sad. Although we do not know the exact reasoning behind this type of situation, there must be a logical explanation. Perhaps there is a dark side that we do not anticipate like alcoholism or drug abuse. Perhaps the mother and child had previously been homeless and when the mother gets back on her feet, she will be able to get her child back. We do not know.
As human beings contemplating the most selfless act of parenthood, we need to consider everything that goes along with the responsibility for it is the greatest of all responsibilities! We need to work with young women that think that it is cute to get pregnant in high school only to discover that their significant other does not feel the same way. Now they are tied to a baby that requires more than a cute outfit, some fluffy booties and a rattle.
Children need to be nurtured, supported, loved; not blamed for their existence. Perhaps if we all realized the greatness of the responsibility of parenthood, we could all be better parents. What do you think?