I hope with all my heart to follow in their footsteps.
I intend to lighten my big kids’ loads. I intend to fill in some gaps. I intend to smooth some rough edges. I intend—as much as it’s within my power and for my children’s good—to do what has been done to and for me. I intend to repay my parents forward.
At some point, there may be a switch. I know grown children who are now doing all they can to make life easier for their parents who can no longer make life easier for them. This is not easy at all. It is the hardest thing they’ve ever done. These children are trying to make life easier for parents whose minds or memories or bodies or spirits are failing. They are trying to repay love backward…to do what was done for them to and for the people who did it.
Too, I know so many grown children who do not have a story of life made easier to tell.
They have parents who made (and make) life harder for them. My heart breaks and aches for them. If this is you, my heart breaks and aches for you.
But as parents ourselves, we are still writing our stories with our children. We still have the chance to earn this telling by them: “My parents made life easier for me.”
This is not enabling. This is not co-dependence. This is not stunting growth. This is relationship. This is love. This is life. It’s rarely easy for long. But lived together, it can be made easier.
This post originally appeared at Guilty Chocoholic Mama, published with permission.