When Your Kids Are Just Like You, Flaws And All

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Parenting Skills and Spills

I somehow ended up with three children with whom I share various personality traits–and remember, not one of them is biologically related to me!

It can be both endearing and frustrating.

C is a morning person, just like I am. I understand when he’s up and raring to go at 6am on a Saturday, no matter what time he went to bed the night before. That doesn’t mean I don’t get frustrated when I don’t get my quiet morning time or get woken up by his natural 10-year-old boy noises.

Girl-E is a procrastinating, over-achieving, creative perfectionist with an attitude and a natural love of books and learning. I’m sometimes shocked by how alike we are. It also causes us to butt heads quite a bit. I’m just as stubborn and sure I’m right as you, kiddo.

E is actually a lot like my dad (thanks, karma). We share a natural comfort speaking and performing in front of people. We also share a discomfort with conflict, a habit of bottling up our emotions and not communicating, and the tendency to respond to stress or feeling overwhelmed with avoidance.

It’s nice when I understand what they’re dealing with. E was struggling today with overdue schoolwork and my (annoyed) response to finding out about via an email from his teacher. He is totally overwhelmed, and I get that.

I mean, viscerally, at this very second as Advent looms a week away and I have two stole orders to send before Thanksgiving that I haven’t started and a speech to write for Friday and calendar items to write up for the newsletter and newspaper for tomorrow and food to prep for Saturday and a sermon to write for Sunday and holy-crap-I-can’t-catch-my-breath-until-Epiphany feelings, I get it.

But I’m trying to get him to learn now what it took me years to figure out (ok, am still working on). Avoiding the stuff that’s stressing you out because it seems like too much just makes it worse. You have to face it head on, one thing at a time. As best you can, deal with it in a timely manner, because the longer you wait, the tougher the consequences. In his case, he didn’t quite get the assignment, so he didn’t make the best use of his research time, didn’t work on his paper, didn’t turn it in on time, and probably would still be avoiding it if I hadn’t found out about it and called him on it. He still didn’t do it quite right, so I know he’ll have to put more time and energy into it–time that could have been spent on other stuff if he’d asked for help and put in the effort right away.

When your kids are like you, you want them to learn from your mistakes and wisdom. You know all too well the pitfalls that await them. But sometimes, they just have to figure it out on their own, like you did.

And you just have to let them. Sigh.

The Author

I'm a pastor. I believe in radical love and ridiculous grace. I love to sing and sew, and have a shop on Etsy. I'm trying to make my ecological footprint smaller. I have chickens who provide endless entertainment. Oh, and I'm a formerly single mom by choice, son E (born 6/00, placed 11/23/11, adoption finalized 11/21/14) and now making a life with The Dude and his two kids, Girl-E (12/02) and C (9/04). Baby Bumpy due to arrive around 5/25/15! This blog chronicles my thoughts on faith, family, and the wild adventure we call Life!

1 Comment

  1. Snoskred says

    Hey there, I found you via the NaBloPoMo blogroll.

    I am so not a morning person, but I am trying to learn to be one, and I’m not the greatest fan of it.

    Re being overwhelmed, I have a little trick I am trying out just lately called the Pomodoro technique. You focus in on a task or job for 25 minutes, no distractions, email and phone switched off, then have a 5 minute break. I think this could be a real break through for me, I’m getting shiznit done here. Plus, because it is only 25 minutes I don’t feel like I am coming out of a cave when it is over.. I used to do 2 hour focus sessions twice a day but I think this is better. 🙂

    As part of NaBloPoMo I try to comment on as many participating blogs as I can, and I also add participating blogs to my feed reader. So I’m just dropping by to let you know I’ve added your blog to my feedreader, I’m reading you loud and clear.

    I have created three bundles on Inoreader so that bloggers can easily visit other participating NaBloPoMo bloggers which you can find here –


    Your blog is in the second bundle.. I have a link up going at my place so my readers can find participating blogs which you are more than welcome to add your blog link to.

    Looking forward to seeing your posts. You may see me drop by again during November, but it might be December before I finish my first drop by to blogs if I don’t get faster at leaving comments. 🙂

    Happy NaBloPoMo to you!


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