The shortest blog post in history: yes!
Ok, seriously folks. In the last 24 hours, I’ve read two things in relation to parenting that gave me pause. One was a Yahoo article about a teenager who has eaten nothing but Ramen noodles for the last 13 years. As a result, experts estimate that she has the health of an 80-year-old. Where the heck are the parents here? I refuse to accept the fact that a parent has been unable to course correct this eating spiral over 13 years. I’m sure it hasn’t been easy for these parents, but my goodness. Where is the accountability?
The other thing I read was not exactly new news, but I saw one of my more conservative FB pals post an excerpt from Bill Cosby’s famous Pound Cake speech. Much like the Bible, I think people can use this speech and twist it to their own needs, but for me, it’s all about parental accountability. As a parent, this speech resonates loudly with me. I don’t see parenting as a uniquely white/black/red/polka dot issue. It’s hard freaking work being a parent regardless of color. Add in social inequity, poverty or ignorance and that job just got a whole lot harder. But parents still have to be accountable.
And then there is my family. Budding Homesteaders. Want accountability? Try Homesteading. The ultimate accountability. It’s not just our precious children or grandchildren, but I like to think that whether you are homesteading on your urban rooftop or on your 1000 acres, you have entered into a contract to do things right for your land, your animals, your plants, your family, your friends…all of it. It’s all about choice and the consequences of those choices.
Now, does this mean that I think all farmers, ranchers, homesteaders are better parents? Of course not. The same jerks exist everywhere regardless of lifestyle. But dang it, I’m sick of hearing about parents buying their children’s love with stuff. I’m weary of seeing parents convince their children that they are the center of everyone’s universe. I’m over hearing parents tell their children that bad behavior is a product of bad environment and not bad decisions. I wish more parents loved enough to be strong. To be that mean parent. To realize that our children are capable of making decisions, taking responsibility and feeling accountability. Making affordable mistakes is all part of learning and certainly something that we do here every single day as homesteaders. So no, I am not so arrogant to think that homesteaders are better parents. I think today’s post was more rant than information, but perhaps there is something to this way of life. Maybe this lifestyle can teach our kids a thing or two about accountability even if we aren’t always perfect parents. It is certainly my prayer for our future.