As much as I do things with my kids, their world is different from the one I grew up loving. I often question if I do enough to expose them to things like I was. I understand that questioning our parenting decisions is normal I mean who really knows how to be the perfect parent. I worry that I may be sheltering my kids more than I’d like to.
I grew up playing in dirt, making mud pies, and picking fruit straight from the trees in my grandparent’s backyard. I figured my kids would experience the same. Sunny life with outdoor play time every day. Never did I imagine I’d move out of California.
When the decision to move was put upon us our kids were small. They didn’t go out much because we didn’t have a yard. I didn’t I’d have to worry about them playing in the yard just yet. Living on the east coast comes with a different set of mind when it comes to raising kids. The area we live in has woods, wildlife, and extreme weather- compared to California.
The kids can really only go out and play certain months out of the year. Most of the time we are indoors or traveling to keep busy and experience different things. I can seriously count the times we’ve spent outdoors just sitting and playing in the grass- there not many. The park is usually too hot to play on, flooded, or full of snow!
My kids discovered ladybugs last year and were terrified. Had it been me as a child, I would have reached out and grabbed them all. I loved collecting different leaves, bugs, rocks, and seeds as a kid. My children, though encouraged, are too afraid. I have no idea where this fear comes from.
I plan to do more to expose them to our world. I’d love for them to live a little more. I don’t want them to grow and feel like they missed out.
Perhaps mud pies and bug scavenger hunts are in our future. I’m willing to get dirty if it means my kids won’t be as sheltered and terrified.
Do you ever question your parenting?
Read more of Ruby’s writing at Growing Up Blackxican