One of the hardest parts of parenting for me so far, four years in, is dealing with the fact that my kids will be affected by my flaws. Yes, I have a brutal inner critic. She has only gotten more vocal in motherhood. I’m working on befriending her rather than letting her beat me down. But for the moment I still actively find myself wishing that I could pass on the good traits I possess while directing my kids to better qualified teachers in the areas I could use some work. Like money. One of the many things I worry about is passing on my less-than-ideal approach to money. I’d like to fix it in myself, not just for me but so I can teach them good habits.
Money and appreciating what we have wallops me this time of year, as I think about Christmas presents and wanting to create a magical experience for my children but not wanting to inundate them with more stuff (they have a lot of stuff). I remember wanting certain toys as a kid and not getting them, feeling disappointed when I got to school after Christmas vacation and instinctively worried or noticed that my presents didn’t measure up. I can only imagine that all the other kids were worrying the same. When I got older I was surprised to discover that Cabbage Patch Kids and Barbies didn’t cost that much money after all. Hey! I can buy a lot of these. Although even still my decision about how much I can afford is not based on a true understanding of what money I have available–it’s based on a long-standing habit of overspending during the holidays, using credit and paying it back.
What do I want my kids to know about money? I’m not even sure but so far the idea that most resonates with me is one I learned at the Lola Retreat in August–about money being a flow of energy and it is up to us to determine how to use that energy to best serve us in terms of meeting our goals and living our best lives. So yeah. I want to learn how to do that and then I want to teach my kids how to do that.
This is a mini-post because I have to think a lot more about this topic. For now, ta da!