Say Hello To My Little Friend

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There is something really wonderful that happens when your daughter becomes a mother. You get smarter. Really!

For 5 years past their expiration date I heard “If you had just let me go to this party” and “well you should have let me do that instead” and now that Ms. Presley Layne has hit her not-so-terrible two’s, it’s all “I’m so glad you didn’t let me do that” and “how did you know I’d go there?”

Ah, to be appreciated. (Hush Mother, I can read your mind. Yes, through the bloggosphere, I can sense your thoughts.) Like I was saying, as a grandparent, the most awesome moments happen when your kids tell you that maybe, JUST MAYBE, you did something right as a parent.

We don’t do it for the kudos or the gold stars but when the appreciation is genuine, it’s heart-warming. I absolutely love watching my daughter on this journey through Parenthood.

This morning my Blondie showed me a video that outraged her.

I have to admit: I was FURIOUS! What kind of school is that? I questioned.

The school play is a right of passage. Jordan was “Grandpa” in the 4th grade Christmas play, and I was pretty pleased with his performance. He had a speaking part and everything. I bragged to the grandparents, I posted it on Facebook, I even washed my hair that day.

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His twin had a minor part as well. He held up a sign in the KWANZA song. We left the school beaming with pride.

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So when I saw this, I thought, “Surely this is FAKE!”

Luckily it was fake, but still I find it to be in extremely poor taste. What ensued was a debate so fired up that it sent the video viral, and that’s exactly what the director was hoping for.

He used these kids to make a quick buck. You can bet he won’t even recognize them in the mall a year from now, when he’s still cashing his YouTube royalties. But it left me wondering where do we draw the line? Did these parents ask themselves if it was a good idea for their kids to casually act out drug use and violence? Did they care that their little girl was dressed like a sex symbol? Or were they thinking “my baby will be rich and famous”!!

I don’t usually try to judge other parents. It’s a tough job, no matter what your circumstance. But many times we make the decisions that show our kids what we truly value, and in this case, I think what we see is a lack of values.

I don’t let my kids run around the house singing “I was gonna pay my child support, but then I got high”… They go to public school, they know the song exists, but I try my best to teach them not to poison their minds.

My arguer once challenged whether I was racist because I vetoed many of his musical choices. I don’t care what color the singer of the song is, I care what the message brings. There is a quote hanging above my desk- and I believe in this with all my heart.

So many times we don’t think about the messages we send. If our kids hear us on the phone telling Grandpa a little white lie, they are gonna think “it’s ok to lie, Mom does.” If they see us abusing our bodies they will think “I don’t need to take care of myself. Mom doesn’t.” And not to put even more pressure on ourselves, but we shouldn’t value being a YouTube star over having a little class. You can be funny without being sexual, imitating drug usage, or slaying your classmates in gunfire. (Which in light of so many school shootings, I find to be really TACKY.) Just look at the kid who cried “Charlie bit me!”

He got a college education fund out of that viral spread, and he didn’t even hold up his guns and shout “Say hello to my little friend!”

All I’m saying is, think about what you allow your kids to take part in. I’d hate for Johnny to get all coked up and go shoot out the Prom just because he grew up pretending he was Scarface! Young minds are impressionable. And if I didn’t inspire you with my rhetoric, remember this: all the kids on Poltergeist died creepy deaths…

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3 responses »

  1. It is so true about Kiddos thanking you. My oldest daughter is 35 and it was so amazing when Her daughter was born and I became a life saver. Hahahaha and smart again. Then, my 34 year old son followed just behind her. Now, my 27 year old daughter and new mother–who KNEW everything and was RIGHT about everything–has sad a few wonderful things to me about us as parents. These are the days you revel in–after not eating them when they were teens and thought you were the devil.

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