Parenting: When you just don’t want to (Part 2)

P (1)My last post was about my epiphany around being a stay at home mom.  I don’t want to.  That’s the reality of it.  I do not want to be a full on responsible 24/7 stay at home with the kids mom.  I could.  I have the ability.  I just don’t want to.  There are other things I would like to do.  Not that I don’t want to be a mom to my kids.  That ship has already sailed.  It’s already a static thing in my life. And yes, for that too I know I have a choice.  But I choose for it not to be a choice.  It’s just that I do not feel that I am the one to be the sole caretaker of my kids all day everyday.  I just am not.

So then where do I go from here?  The way I have decided to live my life through attachment-like parenting; through homeschooling; through natural life learning kinda-sorta warrants me to be somewhat constantly available to them.  The problem is that this type of life with kids is foreign to me in practice.

Most of the adults in my life were pretty hands-off for the most part.  I, myself, was a mini-adult and remember being around adults a good majority of the time.  I remember adults in my life more than I remember kids, or even the experience of being a kid.  I grew up pretty conventionally, so honestly the ideas that I now choose to live by are new to not only me and my family, but the community at large. This is where the challenge lies.

There are few systems in place that support the type of parenting and child-rearing I am aiming for.  Even within the community of  homeschooling, or attachment-parenting, resources are limited and somewhat specialized and tailored for specific demographics and income brackets and localities.  I have to be very intentional, and very resourceful, and very confident in order to get what I need and want for myself and my kids.  These qualities, save for resourceful, are pretty new to me as well.

Even asking like-minded friends to commit to a weekly activity is difficult to do. I get it.  We are stressed-out; and busy; and trying to figure out what we are doing.  All of us.  For me, though, I’m ready to really start making the world a place that works better for everyone.  And I guess the best place I know where to start is in my own life.

So I don’t want to be a stay-at-home mom.  At least not in the way most people envision that to be.  I need variety.  I need camaraderie.  I need solitude.  I need challenge.  I need rewards and accolades.

When we have the discussion about the conventional 9-5 rat race, and how many of us are choosing to opt out in order to spend more time with our families, and kids, and doing what makes our hearts sing, we also need to realize there is another side to this.  We are also desiring to unplug from the way we have been doing MOST things, including parenting.

It takes a village to raise a child.

The idea of a village helping to raise our children is not only attractive to the parents, but to children, as well.  I remember, as a child, absolutely loving holidays and parties and events where there were many people to interact with and who were interested in interacting with me.  I felt like a playful fairy, and a beautiful princess, and interesting, and confident, and WORTHY.  It required the energy of all the guests to feel that way.  There was inevitably those who would say how big I was, or pretty; and those who would ask me about school, or what I wanted to be when I grew up; and those who liked to play tricks or teach me silly jokes.

And I’m a dreamer.  So I think that everyday should be a party.  And we should feel fun, and interesting, and confident, and worthy everyday.  And this requires a village; a community; a tribe.

I don’t feel like I’m asking for much.  And I know I’m not the only one who needs and wants this in their lives.  But I also know that it may be a big leap from where we are now to a party everyday.

Keep on swimming.  Keep on swimming.

With that I vow to take baby steps.  I vow to keep moving forward.  I vow to keep acquiring and learning the skills necessary to navigate parenthood in a way that resonates with my heart.  My hope is that in this process there will be more love and less fear; more cooperation and less disruption; more peace and less yelling.  And maybe, then, eventually, there will be a point where not wanting to parent no longer exists for me, or anyone.

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