Not So Qualified

*In honor of my one year blog-a-versary, I decided to share some vintage (not so) Special material.  This was my first official post of the blog.  Maybe my new readers will enjoy it, as they surely haven’t gone back this far into the archives.  And if you’ve already read it, maybe it can make you smile again!  Thanks to all my faithful readers!


The Grandmother occasionally reads little tidbits out of the newspaper to me.  The other day is was a piece about some woman who had been arrested for doing some ghastly thing to her own child. The Grandmother made the comment, “People should have to take a test to make sure they’re qualified to be a parent!”

A few days after that, upon hearing that I was homeschooling, the comment was made to me, “Oh, I don’t know if I’m qualified to teach my own child.”

That got me thinking…….

Qualified. Webster defines this as “fit; competent.” That got me thinking even more–am I qualified to be a parent? Consider these following points about yours truly.

  • I once searched for almost forty minutes for my cell phone. My son, upon realizing what I was looking for, told me to call it and listen for the ring. I did, and I heard it ringing……..from inside my pocket.
  • I have served, as the main course of a meal other than breakfast, Lucky Charms.
  • I have told my children to shut up.
  • I have lied to my children because a) I wanted them to do something they didn’t want to do, b) I didn’t want them to do something they wanted to do, or c) simply to get them to be quiet and leave me alone for a few minutes.
  • I have let the television babysit my children.
  • I have a drill sergeant’s philosophy about shouting–I never shout, I just speak in a voice loud enough for everyone to hear.

I will not even get into the background stuff before my children were born. This is a blog after all, not a confessional.

Anyway, would I qualify? Let’s just say it’s a good thing there isn’t a test. The stuff back there is just the tip of the iceberg. I have a list of faults a mile long. Yet, somehow, I have been entrusted with not one, but two little people to raise into functioning adults. Better still–one of them is a special needs child who is dependent on me for everything.  Needless to say, it makes me nervous.

It doesn’t help when I am confronted with the uber-mommy. You know the ones I’m talking about. Where do these women come from? They always have their hair fixed and their make-up on, and they are always dressed in cute little outfits that have those sweaters with no sleeves or whatever.  They craft and scrapbook and they fix three nutritious meals for their families every day. I expect they churn their own butter.

Meanwhile, I’m home pouring Lucky Charms into a bowl and yelling at my kids. It doesn’t seem fair, does it? And yet… kids seem pretty happy and well-adjusted.  We’re a pretty close family, and there really isn’t a whole lot of drama here.  I don’t seem to embarrass them too much yet.  I think the key might be love. More than that, I think the key might be loving your children more than you love yourself.  That is where a lot of people fall short.

I’m almost absolutely certain that I wouldn’t officially be called fit or competent to raise another human from birth into adulthood, but I’m struggling along every day and doing the best I can. It’s worked out okay for me so far.  I’d love to share with you some of my success stories, but right now I can’t. I’ve got to go look for my cell phone.


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