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The job description

July 19, 2010

My ten year old is a pretty typical oldest child.  He’s well behaved, responsible and keeps our family going. The thing that I worry about with him is that he does very well – when given guidance and direction. But when he isn’t given constant guidance he tends to stray off the path of perfection. He has been gone for nearly two weeks and is now finally home for a two week break before jumping back into football and school.  He went to summer camp for 4 days, came home for a few and then left for KC with his friend’s family for a baseball tournament.  That was two weeks free of chores, responsibilities, and discipline.  I knew this week would be a challenge and I was spot on.  It got me thinking though about my role as a mom and what my “job” is as his mother.

It made me think about college – where he will be gone for months at a time and essentially (hopefully) moved out for good.  I worry – what if he will be “that guy” that goes off to college and doesn’t know what to do with himself.  What if he parties and/or sleeps his entire education away?  It made me realize – this is my job – I have eight or nine more years to teach him how to be responsible and make good choices regardless of if I am lurking around the corner ready to attack him with yet another painfully boring lesson on proper behavior.  

As a business owner I take my job pretty seriously – I would never want my business to flounder – but I don’t always remember the importance of the job of being a mom.  Sure I know that bedtime stories, good nutrition, snuggles, support, encouragement and play time is important.  But I often forget that teaching my kids to be independent and live without me is equally as important for a successful life and the job of being a mom is much more than making dinner, signing permission slips, running carpools and baking cookies.

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