Monday, July 05, 2010

The blessing of older ladies

My life is blessed with lots of older ladies to give advice, encouragement, and support. Actually some of these "older ladies" are not really older but because they had their kids at a more , ah, typical age than I did, they are more experienced and wiser than I.

Sometimes it is not such a blessing though, when one of these ladies gives advice that fits her life but not mine. I will never forget the time I excitedly told an older lady about our new freezer. She went into a rant about how "you young people today" want everything new; why, she and her husband were happy to have a used freezer given to them! It didn't matter (or maybe she didn't hear me say) that we'd have been happy with a used freezer too, but no one was giving any away when we were thinking about getting one. (I was tickled, though, that she said "you young people" since I was well over 40 when I got my freezer. But then she was about 80, I think.)

A few years later I was told by a veteran homeschooling mom that my kid would learn to read without troubles if I just used a systematic phonics program. She didn't want to hear me tell her that we'd tried several systematic phonics programs and none of them worked. Those programs had worked for her kids! (My kid did learn to read, and well, but did not learn phonics, ever.)

The other day I was told that my kids didn't need braces because, well, their teeth look fine. And their teeth will move back into their old (bad) positions anyway, because my kids won't wear their retainers long enough. Well, that's how it worked for this lady's kids anyway.

I am not planning on sending my kids to school when they reach junior high, even though a few other mothers told me that's what I ought to do because it worked out well for them and their kids. Whoops, I think one of my kids missed the first year already.

Two years ago at a baby shower, the mother-to-be was showered (ha ha) with advice. Don't do this, do that, nurse, don't nurse, whatever you do don't let your baby sleep in your bed, on and on. I was exhausted hearing all the conflicting advice; I wonder how she felt. Later she told me she ignored most of it because she knew she'd figure things out once the baby was born and she got to know him. Yea for her!

I am truly thankful for these ladies. I am also thankful that my mother wasn't, and my mother-in-law isn't, very much like them. Somehow the two mothers in my life seem to have figured out that my life and my kids aren't exactly like theirs.

I hope I am the same way when I am one of those older ladies. Oh wait, I guess I already am one!

1 comment:

Kerri said...

Oooooh ya. I have a friend who is absolutely profuse with advice. I feel like the only time she is comfortable with conversation is when I take the position of advisee and she advisor. Sometimes I'm fine with taking that role, but sometimes it gets a little wearying.