Remember the day you left for school and forgot your lunch at home? There was no cell phone to call with and if you were anything like me, the last thing you wanted to do was drag your mom to school...So you suffered. Maybe you confided in your best friend and she gave you half of her hero sandwich. Or maybe you were hungry in silence.
Today, this type of suffering is much less common. There are cell phones you can sneak an emergency call in. And even if you can't, it seems like children are less "uncomfortable." So I ask, what are you willing to do to make sure the bumps in the road are always smooth for your child? And is this really the direction we should be going in?
Take Sarah from the Upper East Side of New York, she explained that whenever her son forgets his gym clothes, she just has him buy another one. "I'm not going to have something as unimportant as gym affect his final grade." I asked her how often this occurs and she said, "...At least once every few months."
Or what about Carol from the Village who puts their child and sitter in an Uber for the school that's under ten blocks away. "Sometimes she walks," she explained. "But mostly it's just more practical. Plus she often finishes up her homework in the car."
"There's also Donna from New Jersey who admits she makes sure her middle schooler has a different outfit for every school day. "She's just more excited about school this way." Or Frank who boasts his son has 24 pairs of sneakers at the start of every school year. And Cicely from Brooklyn whose daughter has a publicist ready, plus hair and make-up crew on speed dial every weekend for her teen. "The best places are hard to get into so this just makes it easier."
Easy seems to be the theme here. As well as "comfort." We don't want to ruffle any feathers of these pre and post-pubescent children that already have cyberbullying, State Wide Tests, and peer pressure to deal with.
I asked each of the parents what happens after...as in, real life when they move on to College or out on their own. And they unanimously agreed that by then the children will be more organized and responsible.
But how will they get that way if they never fall down? If they are told they mustn't fall? If every possible misstep is calculated and fixed?
Some of my fondest childhood memories were sitting in my girlfriend's bedroom and doing each other's make-up. Borghese was the one with the outrageous colors. There was no Sephora. Make-up artists were for special occasions like Bat Mitzvahs and Sweet 16's.
It's easy to write about it, but living it is different in this day of catered services like Seamless and Fresh Direct that make our adult lives oh so much better. And just as I was writing this, I got a phone call from my eleven-year-old, her dance class had ended and she couldn't find her sock for Tennis. I'm right near stores that I can run and buy one at. Or I can tell her that life is full of days when we "lose our sock"...play without it.
What would you do? Please share your thoughts below.