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March 18th: Forgive Your Parents Day

March 18th: Forgive Your Parents DayMarch 18th is Forgive Your Parents Day.  Really.

My friends and I often joke about what our kids will eventually complain about when they’re adults.  We work so hard to be the best parents possible but it’s rare to find people who make the claim that their parents did everything perfectly.  Most of us can only hope for our kids to say “My parents did the best they could do” when they’re adults because no matter how incredibly hard we try to be the best parents we can be, there will always be something we do wrong.

Well then, thank God for Forgive Your Parents Day.

What will my kids eventually need to forgive my husband and I about? The first thing that springs to mind right now is my husband’s absence.  As a military member he comes and goes and sometimes spends months away from home.  We’re all proud of what he does, but I know his absence takes a toll on the kids.  They’re stuck with me, and since I’m trying to be both mom and dad while also holding the house together and meeting all my writing deadlines, I’m sure I’m less than pleasant sometimes.  Maybe years down the road, on a future March 18th, my kids will make the following proclamation:  “I forgive Dad for being gone all the time and Mom for being so busy.”

I’m a lot stricter than my parents ever were with me when I was a child.  They were very laid back when it came to parenting; my brother and I spent a lot of time wandering around and playing instead of doing anything structured.  There weren’t many rules other than “come home when the streetlights come on” and “if you’re going to swear, don’t do it in front of your Nana.”  So it’s a little strange that I’m much more strict with my kids, although I wouldn’t say I’m extremely strict.  At any rate, on a future March 18th, perhaps the proclamation will be, “I forgive my mom for being strict.”

What do I need to forgive my parents for? I don’t know.  There is nothing incredibly profound that sticks out, and I can honestly make the statement that my parents did the best they could.  I can only hope that someday my kids can make the same claim.

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