The Journey Begins….

Walking 1I am a stay-at-home mom, a household manager, a CPO (Chief Parenting Officer) – call it what you want, but I have found it to be one of the most challenging roles I have ever filled.  My daughters light up my world on a daily basis, sometimes with the joyous grins on their faces as they put on dance performances or play tag and sometimes with the lightening that accompanies their hurricane-like behavior that leaves my world spinning.   Josie and Lily are 3 and 1 respectively and both are very loving and affectionate – true snuggle bugs.  And yet, these same snuggle bugs can tear a room apart in 3 seconds flat and make me question my decision to be a stay-at-home mom.   They are strong-willed which simultaneously makes me proud and makes me shiver in my boots– what will this mean when I have 2 teenage girls in the house???   For the record, I am not doing this parenting gig alone.  The Hubs, aka Jay, is a master at play and willingly dons princess tiaras and sips “tea” while sitting in tiny chairs at a tiny table.  The girls love him.  I love him.  But, as in most families, one parent bears more of the parenting responsibilities and, in our family, that parent is me.

Walking 2

Parents bear great responsibility to raise their children to be self-sufficient, responsible, and, hopefully, empathetic and caring individuals.  Growing up, I think my mom did a bang-up job of teaching my brother and me to care about others and try to make a difference whenever possible.  Many of the lessons she taught us were through church-sponsored programs and had some sort of religious tilt to them.  Now, let me be clear about this:  we were not a die-hard, church-every-Sunday, pray-before-meals kind of family.  Most times she herded us kicking and screaming out of the house to our place of worship or bribed us with breakfast out afterwards (yes, I was a sucker for New Jersey diners growing up.)   When I was old enough to make the decision, you know, the ripe old age of about 15, I stopped attending church.  I never went back – aside from the occasional funeral mass or baptism that one encounters in adulthood.  Sound familiar?  I know others exist out there.  The Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life has dubbed us “Nones,” a clever play on our answer when asked about our religious affiliation. Read more about their findings here.   So, Nones, are you out there?  And, are you feeling what I am feeling?

Walking 3

Lately, I have been feeling conflicted about the idea of raising my children without religion in their lives.  So, I began to think about what it was I thought my girls would be missing by not attending a church or other form of organized religion.  And it dawned on me that the most important lessons I learned were not at all exclusive to religion – in fact, I have been practicing them for my entire adult life without any “help” from religion at all.  EUREKA!  I do not need to feel guilty about raising non-religious children.   But, to be the best CPO I can be, I do need a plan to bring to life my dream of raising well-adjusted, civically-engaged, independent women.  Will you join me on this journey?  I will be searching for fun, family-friendly ways to teach my kids lessons about “giving back.”  Hopefully, I’ll learn a thing or two along the way.  And maybe, just maybe, I’ll inspire another family to take this journey too.  Wouldn’t that be amazing?!

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7 thoughts on “The Journey Begins….

  1. I look forward to learning through your experiences. Have fun doing it! I’ll enjoy reading all about your family on the new blog 😀

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