We think our kids are just an extension of us—
What folly that is, how vain.
When born, they conjure within us
As they grow, we realize
They are not us—they are more,
They are the greatest teachers
We could ever have,
Even when they are scribbling
With ball point pens on the kitchen wall,
In the produce isle,
Cheating on their math
Somehow, they learn to please us, yet
Know exactly how to hurt us.
And we, we smile through it.
When they stay out too late,
Or call at midnight to say
they’ve wrecked the car,
Or lost their keys, or need some money,
We quickly remember when they
Said “Happy Mother’s Day” or can I help?
Wait, have they ever us asked that?
But they have done plenty.
Proudly shown us their drawings,
Brought home good grades, or at least
Nice comments from the teacher,
Helped a friend who needs their time,
They call their sister or tell their brother
They love them.
Remember the time they helped out
The food pantry or the blood or bone marrow drive
Or taught art to the kindergarten class,
Or did magic tricks at the children’s hospital?
People think parents had something to do
With that. Children do good works in
The world, which we, the parents, often
We were as surprised as anyone.
They are their own selves. They love, hurt,
help, honor, make mistakes and make the
They are so human and that, I suppose,
Is how they are just like us.