Many people think that discipline is the essence of parenting. But that isn't parenting. Parenting is not telling your child what to do when he or she misbehaves. Parenting is providing the conditions in which a child can realize his or her full human potential.
For generations, the path to domestic bliss was pretty clearly mapped out for young women. Study hard, go to college, fall in love and get married. And then came the Millennials, the generation that's taken upon itself to rewrite the book on finding fulfillment.
I remember a heady mix of longing, fear, anxiety, yearning, anticipation, excitement, sorrow, joy, stress and celebration. For me, college graduation was bittersweet, and so I suspect, it will be for my son, who just happens to be a lot like his mom.
They say that those who fight the hardest are those who are the most alike, so perhaps it shouldn't have surprised me that when it comes to parenting, the English and the French have quite a bit in common.
The tooth fairy only brings a quarter. There is no adjustment for inflation. Your birthday cake will probably always come from the store, as will your Valentine's cards for school. I didn't buy baby moccasins because the ROI on that investment was one good Instagram picture.
I knew one day my kids would ask me about the meetings I go to. I figured they would be about 10-years-old before they asked any probing questions. I was off by about six years. And I totally should have seen it coming.
We've all seen the photos. There's a person (usually a mom) working at home, bouncing a beautiful baby on one knee and cranking out reports on her laptop with her free hand. Those images make me crazy.
Eventually, when she's old enough, I'll tell her about that dreaded day in Boston. But my focus will be on the citizens, runners, emergency workers and bystanders -- all everyday heroes, who made (and make) Boston an amazing place to call home.
The microscope will make you anxious. It will make you question every decision you make and do things that you wouldn't ordinarily do. It will add significant stress to your parenting experience, if you let it.
"Mama, is God a girl?" Looking down the road, I can see that the questions are only going to increase and get more and more interesting. Years of explanations and serious conversations unfold in front of me, and I wonder how well I will do.
We live in a time when we can Google everything, share ideas and expose our children to amazing opportunities, but anyone that implies that they have it figured out is either drunk or lying (or both), so don't be too hard on yourself.