Tuesday, September 30, 2014

The Battle for Independence


I love history and always have.  I see the truth in the adage about repeating it if we are not familiar with it playing out over and over.  One of the things in history that I have read a lot about are struggles for independence.  The power in charge being fought for equal voices at the table when making decisions - the break from a monarchy  - the break from dictatorship even if it is benevolent.


However, I did not expect to be living through my own 1789 Vive Le Difference, 1917 Soviet style proletariat uprising in my own home so soon.  I understood that my reign, benevolent dictatorship to them and Royal Queen to me, would have it's challenges from my two sons but you know 1789 and 1917 and 1776 all happened hundreds of years after being under these reigns which in human household years roughly translates to teenage years.  Before you get ready to call Child Services, you know once in a while I could use an office called Mommy Offices that comes in and I don't know gives me a month in foster care on the Amalfi Coast, I do not treat my children like serfs.  There are fair wages agreed upon for chores - more Norma Rae then Marie Antoinette (though often cake is requested and granted).  There are many advantages to taking care of their parcel in our house (aka pick up after themselves) such as full vacations, food and whims paid for.  Healthcare, vacation days, continuing education classes and sick days are all fully covered.

Now with all that why oh why do they want .... independence.  I know it is a good thing in my head - it is what I had and anyone who knows me knows I am one independent need nothing can do it myself type of woman and have always been.  Yet I was not ready for the dissent is going on now .... and they are not teenagers.

I grew up in New York City during a high crime, it was not a nice place, time.  I walked to and from school much further than the current school is for my older child.  I did not have a cell phone because even if they had been invented we could not have afforded one.  I and many if not most other children did this.  We survived, we were fine, we actually liked it.  Yet when my son asked if he could do it in our nice town I nearly passed out.  Why would he not want to go to daycare - where his friends are?  My crown was askew at his asking.  I gave in, well sort of, by dropping by a mutually agreed upon location on a day I could pick him up as was not working in afternoon ... I was met with Le Mis barricade in the form of "Do not get out of the car -- please -- do you see any other mothers here?"

It is natural for these dissentions -- this break from what mom says to what I want to do.  There are parts of me that watch the news and want to protect my boys from everything.  I know I cannot.  I am not a ruler but their mother, in all my queenly glory, and I have spent a lot of time trying to raise them to be ... independent.  I want them to be aware and happy and able to go out in to the world.  It is just like with a lot of parenting moments it may be right but it ain't easy.

So as I learn to grant more independence with prudence I guess I have to look at what happened to most places who revolted -- the US thrived, France well they did have the Reign of Terror but then revolted again and they are a cool place, the Soviet revolution has what not to wind up like and overall even Scotland decided that staying with the Queen Mother may not be as awful as leaving her totally.  This will be the Velvet Revolution not a battle with lots of cake for all, and lots of wine for me.

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