None of us are perfect we all have our vices. We always tell her our children do as I say not as I do… but is that truly realistic? Don’t we know that they are like sponges and absorb everything their parents and those close to them do?
Of course we do, and they can’t help it. We did it as children and they will as well. The truth of the matter is, we must lead by example and be as authentic as possible with our children, it’s the only way they will learn from our bad choices and fucked up mistakes. See, many will say I am too open and militant with my children, but the truth is I am a product of Diana Jackson & Wilfred Jackson who are my beloved parents who raised me in the concrete jungle of Queens, New York where I grew up seeing things children should never see.
That life is what made me the woman I am today. My mother was open but also a huge protector, quite over protective, and she never believed in oversharing which I get now. But for me, now as a mother, I feel our children are definitely more resilient than we think… so my decision to be more open and candid but still tough has worked thus far. I am far from perfect and pray I could be half of the mother my momma was and is. She was best Mother any kid could want there to assist with all homework, cook, protect me from “the streets,” and take me to the Kingdom Hall to serve our creator. In the midst of all of this she also taught me to love my chocolate skin, my big hair, and most importantly to respect my body and treat it as the temple it is.
As I have raised my daughter and am damn proud, I am now raising my son which is a different ball game and I am very tough on him because I know how ruthless the streets are to our Black men. I know it’s up to myself and his Father to do what we think is best for him, giving him the tools to deal with this unjust world and still not make excuses on why he shouldn’t be his best. I have, we all have, done shit we are not proud of and my only hope is that my young son knows my tough love comes from concern and not wanting him to fall hard like we did.
There’s no manual to raising these children as they all have different needs but you just have to make what you deem to be the best decision as their parent. Just remember one thing, if you are living a life filled with hypocrisy always be ready for kids to reflect that mirror back at you if you are not authentic about it.
We are all hypocrites so just own it. They will remind us later if we don’t choose wisely.