Madelene, You Don’t Owe Me a Thing

Sorry for the silence. I have to admit, the Valentine took it out of me, far more than I expected. I’ll be better about my posting.

Madelene Smiling

I sometimes hear people snidely say something to the effect of “I changed your diapers so one day you’ll change mine” to their children. It’s just a god-awful sentiment, in my humble opinion. It implies that all that care you gave your child was conditional, that you were just doing it to cover your own aging butt.  I don’t want that for my child. I want her to now that I love her unconditionally–certainly we’ll have rules and limits and such, but she needs to know that I love her above all else.

It sounds idealistic, but I don’t care. I don’t want M feeling as if she has to earn my love or that she owes me for the care I gave during her childhood. Where would the cutoff be? Would she not owe me for anything before 12? Or after 18? It’s just ridiculous. Of course, I hope my children will want to take care of me when I am all old and infirm, but that’s on me. I have to raise them to be compassionate people while not being a jerk to them. I also need to take care of myself and make sure I have provided as much for myself as possible. My happiness in my elder years should not be dependent upon my kids, it should be enhanced by them.

Of course, things can get dire. Once again, I hope to raise my children to be loving and kind, and that may be tested in my autumn years. I don’t know. I just think of how my dad and his sisters handled their mother’s last few months. They operated out of a huge well of respect and love for her as a person, not out of some screwy emotional banditry. That. That is what I want to engender.

Anyway, this is all so somber! Let me end with a little glimpse of M smiling, as it cheers me in my darkest mood.

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