March 27, 2012
Does Home Alone Make a Bad Parent?
Watching Mad Men this past Sunday, it seemed a little funny to me that when Joan handed her baby to Roger he did not bother putting his cigarette down. She handed the baby to him not thinking anything of the cigarette. It was not an issue at in the sixties. When I had my girls we were still smoking in the Florence Clinic downtown Florence. That building really stunk. Reminding me of what I heard someone say recently. "Putting a non-smoking section in a resturant is like putting a non-peeing section in a swimming pool."Times have changed for the better in many cases. I really do think that I was a better parent than mine were. People that were adults in the sixties really did have some not so perfect habits. It was not uncommon for men to cheat. It was even accepted by many wife's as just the way men were. Women stayed with them, most of the time out of fear that they could not make it without them. Things that we did not think as dangerous then are now the law. Seat belts most of the time were stuck down in the seat and never thought about, just an extra part of the car; not really that necessary. With all the comments that I have read about Brooklyn Hollin's stabbing death, I am questioning myself as to how great a mother I really was. Part of loving our children is thinking the best of them. I always wanted to think that mine were telling me the truth. I loved them and thought they were wonderful; at least that is what my heart lead me to believe. I have said, I can say what ever I wanted to them or about them, but nobody else better talk smack about my girls. One thing that would really get me to loose it was me thinking someone was being mean to them. Trust is something that I always wanted to have in them. It just took a couple of times catching them somewhere they were not supposed to be, for me to begin checking closer on them. During the time they could have been in the most danger; I was guilty of putting myself first. Then there was my stupidity to go along with selfishness. The older girls in a perfect world would have, and should have been great baby sitters for their sister that was five years younger. I question now what a terrible tragic thing that could have been. I had the greatest friends in the world, but soon was left without them when I could have asked more help from them. On one Sunday afternoon that I was not home, the younger of the twins was spending the afternoon at the Methodist Church. She attended regularly until this day. She was so ashamed of what happened that she did not ever go back. They had been at church that morning. She was great friends with the son of her dad's first cousin/best friend. I was the best friend of his mother. My daughter was talking to a teenage boy from Central, he came to our house while they were waiting to go back to church that night. While the boy from Central was there, he mentioned to her cousin/friend that he had a gun in his car. Making a long story short, her friend left told his mom, told everyone at church what the boy said. I do not know if there was a gun, I was not there. My daughter said he didn't. She lost her friend that day. I lost my friend that day; his mother. She forbid him to ever come to our house again. God once more opened my eyes to what could have happened, by me not being there. These teens were in between church services and a random person, from out of town decides to come by and act as if he is a gangster from Central High school. I could have lost more than the support of a friend. Since years have passed, my daughter and her cousin have come to love each other once more. His mother may have forgotten that day. I will never forget how ashamed I was that a boy came to my house making threats of a gun. The words that Niece said to me still haunt me today. "I am sorry, but I can not take a chance that my son could have been hurt while you were not home. My heart breaks to think of what I lost that day. Respect of a friend, and probably a whole small town. The village does not raise children many times. Sometimes they put you out of their life. I gathered another thing that day; never ever stop paying attention to your children and who they are talking to. In one episode of Mad Men Don leaves three children in a hotel room while he visits his secretary/nanny/future wife. We talk often today of parents that neglect their children. I know there a many, but the one's today mainly have issues. My parents had issues, but were at home most of the time. I really did love for them to be away especially when I was a young teenager. This meant that I could talk on the phone for as long as I wanted, smoke cigarettes or have friends over. At the time that was not very often, because friends did not have cars just to run around in. I have done the thing telling daddy and them that I was spending the night with a girl friend in Grassy; when I was really in Pulaski. This adventure was the first time I ever drank. The morning that daddy was supposed to pick me up, on the ride to my friend in Grassy we met him on the Betty Ann Highway. The road that cut back to Bee's BBQ was the route we took to beat him to the friend that I was supposed to be spending the night with. By the hair of my chinny chin chin, we beat him there just in time for the Pulaski natives to drive off. His question, when I was already waiting was answered, " I was just ready to come home." Typical teenage, that is why I really did not believe everything my kids told me, because I had been there and done that. I am not one that followed Gods plan concerning staying married. I believe that he knew what made life easier when raising children. In his plan marriage was a one time/lifetime thing. Our lives would all be easier if in everything we follow Gods plan. By parents staying together, the children are with the ones that love them the most; thus having someone to put there well being first. A new husband or boyfriend is not going to love your children the way you do. Another thing I have gathered along the way. Dating after children takes your focus away from what you should put first, many times. Wanting to find love again is so common and really not as important as we think at the time. Life is short, before you know it you are old and alone, no matter what you sacrificed to find another love. Life is easier if we follow Gods plan. God blessed me even though I did not stay married. For this I thank him everyday for getting through another one. My gratitude to him is enourmous, because he helped me have the love of three wonderful-hardworking-honest-caring girls. Looks like we made it, but still I will never think I have it made, without God, family and friends to help me along the way.