From Tami: Facing Your Parenting Fears

One of the boys just badly sprained his ankle. This comes about three months after he sprained the other one, and two months after he broke his arm so badly that he needed surgery to have rods put in it.

Raising student-athletes is stressful.

Of course, what is his biggest concern? That he won’t be back on his game in time for the next sports season (he is a three-sport high school athlete). My biggest concern is the amount of damage a 17 year old incur while doing things for recreation. None of his injuries happened during games, by the way—the ankles were during pick-me-up basketball games, and the arm was hurt while snowboarding.

We tell ourselves that the scariest part of motherhood is whatever phase we are in now, and that once they outgrow it we will be fine. But there is an endless supply of things to worry about, at every stage. We worry about how fragile they are as infants. We worry about their development and milestones. We worry about illnesses of all types. We worry about them as toddlers, that scary period when they have all of the mobility and none of the judgment. We worry about them wandering away, about them hurting themselves. We worry about things too awful to name. We worry about our school-age kids, as they take their first, wobbly steps towards independence. We worry about the teenagers, as their bodies, minds, and emotions all grow in uneven spurts towards adulthood.

The list goes on and on.

I try to remember, whenever my worrying threatens to overwhelm me, that at a certain point everything is out of my hands. I remind myself that all I can do is give my children the proper tools. I teach them to look both ways before crossing the street, and I teach them to wear seat-belts and bike helmets. I take them for their annual physicals, and I teach them about healthy habits. We talk about the effects of smoking, drugs, and drinking. I store potential dangers out of reach of the little ones. I have a no-conversation-is-taboo policy, because I believe that information keeps children safe.

And at the end of the day, I trust my children to protect themselves as well as they can. No one knows what tomorrow has in store so—once I trust myself and my kids—all that is left is the knowledge that some things are beyond my control. I find that comforting, actually. It all comes back to the balancing act that I believe in so much, and it is a good reminder to appreciate the small things.

I know you probably face these fears too. But you know your kids, and you know how much freedom to balance with what amount of guidance. I know you are doing what is best for your kids, even if it scares you sometimes.

That’s why you’re a SuperMom.


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