Tuesday, September 3, 2013

My Favorite Part of Parenting

Cast from the cult classic The Breakfast Club
Two weeks ago, I had the opportunity to introduce my kids to one of my all-time favorite movies, The Breakfast Club. This was not the first time I'd introduced them to movies or media I loved, last year I started the #MomsClassicMovies series which has included, Say Anything, Bill and Ted's Excellent Adventure, Wayne's World and Clueless, to name a few.

However, this time was very different than all the previous installations of #MomsClassicMovies. My 12 year old girl and 8 year old boy wanted to discuss the movie - for 90 plus minutes. And discuss we did. While I jokingly complained that this discussion took us deep into the wee hours of the night one Saturday, I loved every moment of it. Sharing things or ideas that mean a lot to me with my two kids is my favorite part of parenting.

Watching them make discovery of concepts and truths while questioning and probing my brain for guidance is my favorite past time. The ability to share my perspective while listening and receiving theirs is priceless. I had many parents ask me why I thought it was OK to allow my kids to watch this movie, at this time. One mom asked, "How did you handle the circle conversation?"

You know the one scene deep into the film where the Jock, the Brain, the Basketcase, the Princess and the Criminal have an explicit talk about sexual experiences among other topics. It was not a big issue at all because I've been pro-active to discuss all types of topics with my children before now. In fact, I know that kids today are exposed to much more than we think no matter how much we protect them. I'd much rather have the discussion we had a few weeks back prompted by my sharing one of my favorite movies with them than any other way. Believe me, those discussion are happening with our kids, the question is are we part of them.

I'm not leaving it chance. We're the parents who allowed our kids to watch NBC's The Office and Parks and Recreation with us. The humorous and off kilter nature of those shows have made it easier to have discussions with our kids that otherwise may not occur. And again, I count all these discussions and moments of engagement with my children as my favorite part of parenting.

What is your favorite part of parenting?

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