Wednesday, March 16, 2016

Letters to Our Children :: March

Dearest Children,

Last week we had our spring break.  For us it was another spring break staycation.  We have done this for years now, making the most of our little college town--enjoying the absence of crowds at the local breakfast hot spot or ice cream shop, blowing bubbles in the yard and finding the swings again as the earth thaws.  This year, though, you older children began to realize (and vocalize) the fact that not everyone partakes in a staycation over spring break.  

Some of your schoolmates were off on exotic adventures while the oldest of you children decided to put in a full week of hard labor at the maintenance company you work with over the summer.  I know that you feel the difference in our circumstances, my oldest child, more than the others right now.  We are by no means poor, and your father and I can provide for you in ways that I didn't have growing up, but you are beginning to really see and feel that some people simply have more.

It can be a harsh reality sometimes, but I have never found it any good to sit around comparing myself to others more fortunate.  My social media feeds had pictures of people in Paris, Disney, beach side and in fancy restaurants last week beside my pictures of sparklers, bubbles, a crocus, and grandma and I at Barry Manilow.  

I can poke fun at our staycation, because I know it is not the sort of thing one might brag about.  But I can also see the simple blessings I have in it.  The hard working teenager who could have chosen video games and sleeping in over a paycheck.  The friends who had you girls for a sleepover and  couldn't say enough about how sweet and easy you are to have as guests.  The way you all interact, disappearing outside to play your own version of made up games.  That grandma (and Barry Manilow) are still healthy and active in their seventies.

I also know, hard as it may be for some of you children to believe, that there are people who look at our life with envy!  There are those who are struggling with broken relationships, illness, loneliness, depression...and some of those people have fabulous social media feeds.  You really never know what someone else is going through.

I worry about how the age of social media might affect you all growing up--having access to so much of other people's lives, and the highlight reel they can present to the world.  Just know that we all have our ups and downs, our strengths and weaknesses.  And if you focus on your strengths, your blessings, I hope that you will always be able to find joy.


I'm joining in the Letters To Our Children blog circle at Everyday Eye Candy
Please head over to LaShawn's Blog to see the next letter in the series!



The Lady Okie said...

This is lovely. You're a wonderful mother.

Jessica G. said...

You always write such beautiful and inspiring letters.

MJ said...

Your letter made me reflect on my own childhood. While he had wonderful vacations, I clearly remember enjoying the simple things that now seem so foreign in today's world. Walks to the park, a stop in the ice-cream shop, hanging out at the playground. Playing with cousins at grandma's house every weekend. Those were the times I cherished most and it's beautiful to see that your children are out enjoying their slice of the world. Refreshing and beautiful.