Parenting never ends. Even when your kids are grown and flown the coop, they still come back to you looking for help or looking for hope. Those moments can induce anxiety about your parenting (Did I teach her everything she needs to know?), frustration with the inconveniences (Why did her furnace have to go out in the middle of the night?), or…joy!
Yes, joy. Sure, we do want to see our daughters become independent and deal with the important things of life on their own, like faith, family, finances, and relationships. We want to teach them how to live productive and meaningful lives and handle daily tasks on their own.
We want to teach them how to live productive and meaningful lives and handle daily tasks on their own.
But I’m glad they still need me. And when they do, I’ve realized these aren’t intrusions in my life, these are opportunities to connect and spend time with them. This time between parent and child is special.
Here are some things they still depend on me for…and I’m so happy they do!
Changing Air Conditioning Filter.
One daughter lives in an apartment building and needed the filter changed in her A/C. I could have had her call the landlord or property manager, but instead, I drove over there, and, in a couple minutes, changed it for her. But I also got to spend some time and chat with her.
Another daughter and her husband recently purchased a house. Because I used to be in real estate law, I found myself talking almost daily with her for a couple weeks. I helped her navigate contract issues, brokers, due diligence, banks, title agents, and the like. Yes, it took a lot of time but I’m so grateful I could walk with her through it.
Any time your child calls to say they were in an accident, always ask about their well-being BEFORE you ask about the car. I had such an opportunity several weeks ago when one of our girls totaled the car she was driving. Fortunately, no one was hurt. So over the next few weeks, I helped her through all the things she needed to do: calling the insurance agent, getting the rental car, and purchasing a different vehicle. We got to spend more time together.
One of those new grown up things our kids have to learn is how to find and choose insurance, for a home, a car, for life, for health, etc. I was able to help one of my daughters evaluate quite a few options, and I appreciated every minute of the minutia.
The bottom line is to appreciate these times as opportunities, not inconveniences or evidence of parenting failure. It’s okay if you don’t get to teach them all these things. You might just find that it will be a wonderful blessing in your life and your relationship with your daughter.
Does your daughter still depend on you? What for? Please share your comments below.