The Middle, it’s a funny sitcom, but it’s also a funny stage of life. The middle. It’s that stage where you are still needed as a parent, but mostly only for your money. Because you certainly don’t know anything that you could teach your teenagers because they already know way more than you.
Just because you have been alive 40 or 50 years doesn’t give you any right to assume you know more than a 17-year-old, right? It’s odd this middle part of life. We are full of dreams and hopes and visions in our 20’s and pursuing the career and having babies and blossoming into adult life. The beginning of adult life is fun and that part of life where adventure is our favorite word and we welcome the challenges.
Then one morning you wake up and you’re in “the middle”. Somehow your babies went from thinking you were the most amazing person with the best ideas who knew the answers to everything to these adult like kids who are certain you are the weirdest person they ever met, have the worst ideas and know the answers to nothing.
But that’s only half the fun when you’re in the middle. All of the sudden you are so aware of gravity. Things that used to be firm and fit are being stretched and pulled by some invisible evil force. The dryer is apparently getting old too because it is suddenly producing such intense heat that all your clothing is too small. And what used to be whimsical dreams of perfect marriages and perfect children have turned into questions like, “did I do the right thing?” or “am I a failure as a parent?”, even, “did I marry the right person?”. You know the good ol’ mid life crisis.
That time where you wonder why you didn’t accomplish all your goals, and marry a perfect person who would make all your wildest dreams come true. Why you don’t have a more lucrative career or why your kids didn’t turn out exactly like you had envisioned.
They are all real life feelings that we all deal with at some point. Maybe its the middle of our life, maybe it’s sooner, maybe it’s later. But, most likely we will all ask ourselves hard questions and convince ourselves that we could have done better, been more, travelled more, made more money. We may ask those questions but we shouldn’t give those questions any more value than they deserve.
The fact is, rather we are at the beginning, middle or end of our life. We probably have done a lot better than we give ourselves credit for. Be glad the kids are independent enough to question everything and figure it our for themselves. Be proud that as a parent you are an everyday hero, trudging through the trenches of laundry, puke, sports, laughter and tears. Be thankful for the job you do have. As a spouse give yourself a pat on the back that you have stayed married a long enough time to have a chance to get into a boring routine. ( Just don’t stay in the boring routine)
No matter what stage of life you’re in, make everyday as good as you can, remind yourself of the all the things you have accomplished, all the dreams that did come true, all the wonderful things your spouse did do for you and all the joy those kids bring. Remind yourself you don’t have to succeed at everything to be happy, you just have to be happy with everything you have.