(This is my guest blog for my sister Mary Alice, From the Frontlines.)
Becoming a parent may happen on purpose or by accident, but however it comes about, parenting itself is a calling.
-Myla and Jon Kabat-Zinn. Mindful Parenting.
The other night I was chatting away with Rescue Ranger as Babou happily played in the tub. Babou joyfully scooped and spilled cup after cup of water while Rescue Ranger and I happily discussed...just about everything. The topic of high school had come up and he was telling me about his experiences.
"But you know Auntie Jo," Rescue Ranger confided in me proudly, "I never did any drugs or drank or got into any kind of trouble while I was in high school."
"Really," I replied, very impressed.
"Nope," said Rescue Ranger, "I was too scared."
I laughed, knowing what he meant. Mary Alice was a force to be reckoned with when she was mad.
"And you know what really gets me Auntie Jo?" Rescue Ranger continued, "She would guess the bad stuff before I could do it. Like I would be going out and she would say, 'I hope you are not thinking of doing such and such because I will be soooo mad if you do,' and I hadn't even thought of doing such and such until she said it and then I would get mad because it was such a good idea and I hadn't even thought of it--mom had! She was always two steps ahead of me."
After Rescue Ranger and I hung up much later that evening, I thought about what he had said. I was so impressed with Rescue Rangers respect for my sis, with his sense of self, with his way of being.
I love Rescue Ranger.
Rescue Ranger has always been so close to me and has only gotten moreso over the years. Now he is more like my best guy-friend than nephew. We call each other up and talk and talk. Nothing is off limits and we know we will always laugh. Rescue Ranger is hilarious and we both have the same quirky sense of humor.
As I tucked Babou into bed, I thought about Mary Alice and what a lovely mother she is to her children, and what a role model to me. It takes phenomenal parenting to raise such a mature and fun son, one that calls up his Auntie to discuss life, love, and the pursuit of happiness.
You have done an amazing job, Mary Alice, and I am so proud of you. Thank you for producing children who are now my friends.