There are moments when I feel I’ve let my kids down, when I realize that I’ve not taught them basic life survival skills. #epicfail
For my generation, we were just on the cusp of video games, and not every house had one, so we weren’t glued to a screen 24 hours a day. It seemed like the basics survival skills of life just sorts of happened organically. I don’t remember my parents going out of their way to teach me these things. But this generation is different.
I’ve noticed with my own kids, that they don’t bother to “learn” life skills, because they have the attitude that they will always have YouTube and the internet to look things up when they need them. We didn’t have that advantage (or disadvantage, depending on how you look at it).
I knew how to cook, at least make the essentials like brownies and cookies, without getting burned, because I was always around when they were being made…because there weren’t all these other options to choose from.
I knew how to answer the phone and take a message, hammer a nail (safely and unsupervised), change a light bulb, pump up a bike tire, fold the laundry, wrap a present (my husband still can’t do that one), use the toilet plunger and turn off the water if it starts to overflow, check the circuit breaker, etc., etc. all at an early age.
But I’ve failed my kids. In my defense, my “starter” child shied away from trying things on her own, and, being the “starter” child, I didn’t really push her. When the second child came along, he wanted to do ALL those things starting at age 2! And in hindsight, I probably should have let him, but, it seemed sort of dangerous for a 2 year old to clean up broken glass, or stand on a ladder to load the laundry into the washer. He was the one that never really got “don’t touch stove…stove hot!” and would challenge every limit we gave him.
Of course, now he’s the one who knows how to season a steak just right, and cook it to perfection (thanks to Dad), and he’s only 10 years old.
I guess it just got easier and faster to do things myself. I’m sure some of you can relate to that.
So my husband and I have decided this is the Summer of Independence!
We’ve got some catching up to do, but our goal has always been to raise my children to be contributing members of society and individuals who can take care of themselves.
I don’t want my daughter to have to call her future boyfriend to hang a picture for her, or to panic when the toilet overflows. And I don’t want my son to have to call a handyman to assemble his IKEA furniture for his first apartment.
Life skills…get ready for the Summer of Independence! Besides, it should make for some good Blog material too.