Thursday, September 8, 2011
when you are 18 and leave home...
Oh yeah that's right...when they are 18 they'll be grown up and moving on their merry way. I am mortified at the growing trend of teenagers who decide living at home, where they have it so good, beats growing up and moving on.
I celebrated the day I left home as a an almost 18 year old. I was out at the beach with some friends when I was suddenly hit with the wave of freedom. I realised I no longer needed to phone home to let anyone where I was. I felt free. Now my home life wasn't horrible but my parents did have high expectations of good children...and anything out of line meant discipline by humiliation. The entire extended family and family friends would know if this good girl stepped a foot out line. So I relished the new found freedom.
Apprehensively I moved into a flat with two others. Thankfully I knew how to cook so we didn't go hungry. I had to do my own washing, keep our place clean and learn how to do the entire weeks worth of shopping. I learnt to be responsible with the very little student allowance I received during my degree and found myself a part time job for more income. I learnt to be independent and self sufficient, something I would never have been able to do if I were still at home.
I want this for my kids. I want them to be empowered, independent and self sufficient. I want them to know how to change a tire and oil, know how to cook a three course meal, sew on a button.I want them to have the tools to be great adults.I want them to experience life in the real world before they get married. I want them know how to look after themselves and others. So I'm starting early. I'm going to drum into them that they need to learn how do these things so they can move out at 18 and be a responsible grown up.
But mostly this nag is for me. Its going to take me 18 years to let them go into the big wide world. This mother who is so protective I don't even let them play at the park by themselves without an eagle eye watching. So I'm thinking if I start psyching myself up starting now...maybe when its time to kick my little chicks out of the nest I will actually let go.