Picture me: feet up, toe nails painted, sitting in one of those folding, web, woven, lawn chairs. I have an iced beverage with lots of ice and it is sitting on the ground beside me. I am working on a stitchery project. The sun is shining. Oh, and I am supervising a four-year old.
This scene was close to 30 years ago.
All of a sudden an official looking car drove up and parked in our driveway. A man got out. He introduced himself. He said he was from CPS. He showed me some sort of fancy badge. That means Child Protective Services. Apparently, a neighbor had called and “reported” me being an abusive mother.
He asked me what I was doing.
I said I am stitching and having an iced beverage.
He said is that your son? I said, “yes”.
He asked, “what is he doing”?
The “official” said, “why”?
I said because he spit on the side-walk.
He chose to clean the sidewalk for 15 minutes. I am supervising and keeping time (while pretending to relax).
Then I got sassy and said, “If you choose to spit on my sidewalk, which I take care of, I would politely, yet sternly ask you to clean up after yourself as well.”
He said, “no ma’am, Have a nice afternoon.” He drove away, smiling.
You see, folks it is called PARENTING.
Okay, okay, the neighbor thought I was the meanest mom in the land.
If that neighbor is interested today; we raised two very respectful, polite, well-educated, interesting, funny, upstanding citizens.
If my religious beliefs allowed me to place a bet, I would gladly bet a huge bag of money (with a great big dollar sign printed on it, tied up with rope) that never again has that son of ours ever, ever spit on a sidewalk.
Baltimore, I am praying for the children and parents of your city.
Being a parent is TOUGH work. It is work. It does take time and effort. It is NOT fun to set up a scene to pretend you are relaxing while your son is on his hands and knees scrubbing. It breaks your heart. However, I love my sons more than I cared about my achy breaky heart.
We all deserve citizens that were raised with parents who actually parented.