My sister K just finished a stint living with us and here are things that we learned:
- The hardest part about rules and boundaries is the follow through once they are crossed. While this is the hardest part, it is the most important. Period.
- Knowing your own limits as a person and as a parent is a very important first step in life and in parenting.
- Asking for help from your spouse is crucial.
- Sharing the load and constantly communicating about sharing the load is important.
- Blaming each other/the other person for mess ups or missed details is a waste of time. Let's just fix it and forget it (like super glue). Well, maybe not forget it, but find a better way to take the lesson away without blaming the other person.
- It is so hard to see your "kid" "adult" person you love make clearly terrible choices.
- The old adage, "When you know better, do better" is going to be ingrained into our kids' heads until they dream it.
- Another gem: Wisdom is earned with age-- is painfully true for most people. But watching someone go back down a path that is likely going to have them wind up in the hospital while ignoring the solid wisdom in front of them, is so hard and frustrating to my bones.
- Faith is so important when you have another person you are responsible for. God is good all the time, but being able to trust in his plan as K makes these choices allows me to let go and let God. (I mean, he has already handled it, so why fret?).
The biggest and best thing I learned was actually about LB. Things blew up while I was out of town in Phoenix and listening to him handle everything with such patience and with such maturity made me fall in love with him over and over again. As I was listening to him talk to her I kept thinking, "Good Lord, I love this man... and I cannot wait to watch him with our kids."
So, here is to getting back to a more predictable existence where we, just the two of us, get to enjoy our little life for a little while longer... before we eventually have our own 22 year old to deal with.