I was talking to a momma at church the other day. When I found out her daughter was 4 years old and her son was 1 year old I commented that I imagined her daughter was a big help with the baby. She said, "No. I don't allow her to help me. I don't think it's right for kids to be obligated to work around the house. I say, 'Children are here to play and go to school. The house is the mother's job.' "
Now, while I will be the first to admit that allowing my 2-year-old to "help" usually requires me counting to 10 and willing myself not to be annoyed at the inevitable messes that come along with his help... I am so glad that Noah wants to help. And I want to cultivate that. I want him to learn to be responsible and hard-working. To know that everyone in a family plays a part in that family.
I related the conversation I had with this momma to Rey. It made me wonder if that is why it seems so many "young marrieds" in Mexico have it so bad? I mean, why it seems like things are just a confused mess? Does the philosophy of the mother above reflect the philosophy of many here? If so, adulthood must come as a real drag to many Mexican youth. Would that be why there are so many selfish, indulgent and angry husbands? So many mommas who spend the day buying clothes and going to parties while their babies sit tired and neglected in some corner?
Whatever the case, I am glad my parents raised me to be hard-working and responsible. I enjoyed this article a friend sent me...
My little man takes serious pride in being a helper. If I ask him, "Are you momma's helper?", he nods very seriously. If he sees me sweeping, he runs over with the dustpan and waits for me to "need" him. If he sees me putting laundry on the line, he runs over and hands me articles of clothing. If I go to wake up baby, he runs in and calls out in a sweet-as-honey voice, "Good morning baby! How are you?" If he sees daddy working, he runs over, grabs a tool and starts banging on things. If I am feeding baby, he wants to help. If I change baby's diaper, he wants to run the diaper to the garbage can. If I go to the bathroom, he wants to flush the toilet. (Like I said, so much "help" can be overwhelming... but I have to ask myself: Do I or do I not want to be developing that spirit of seeing a need and taking the initiative to help? Yes. Most definitely.)
After he "helped" me put away the laundry, he decided a worker is worthy of a rest. ;)
Helping to wake up baby.