Thursday, October 18, 2012

Why THIS is meant for ADULTS!

You may remember the Rex Mobile that my husband Jim Rex had wrapped for two political races, with his picture on it like a traveling billboard. Well once the election was over, the truck became a farm truck again, until this summer when Jim and I put the camper back on top and drove it across the country to meet up with our four married children and our six grandchildren in Seattle. Two of our children live in South Carolina, one in Las Vegas, and one in Hawaii. With our children scattered across the country, we treasure the rare opportunities to get them all together.

During the three and a half weeks we drove and explored our way to Seattle (Glacier National Park, the Badlands, Mt. Rushmore, Indian reservations, rodeos, etc.), we were entertained and inspired by new sights and insights. Our ten days with our "children/parents", however, proved to be the single most enlightening and gratifying part of our nearly eight-week American journey.

Since the children don't often get a full week off and rarely are able to spend it together, Jim and I did a lot of babysitting. As grandparents we were thrilled and exhausted each day. You quickly forget how much work it is to raise children and do it well! We have twin fourteen year old step granddaughters, a nine year old step grandson, a two year old granddaughter, a fifteen month granddaughter, a fourteen month grandson, and another baby on its way!

As proud grandparents, we did a lot of observing of our own children during our vacation together. We saw young adults who showered their children with kisses, hugs, and patience. Our children are all in their thirties now; but it was easy to remember their immaturity and lack of responsibility just a decade or so ago during their high school and college years. During those early years, Jim and I had many talks with them regarding making responsible decisions. We prayed for their safety, their happiness, and that they would avoid and postpone a pregnancy. We wanted them to enjoy their adolescence and youth and learn what it means to be responsible. We wanted them to be old enough and wise enough to understand that parenthood is meant for adults who are mature enough to put their child's needs before their own. We were so proud to watch all of our children display the type of parenting skills all children deserve. They needed to grow up themselves and be ready to really want to raise their children with love and guidance. I'm happy to report that we consistently witnessed these qualities and it made us feel so blessed to call them our children.

Please young folks, postpone becoming a parent until you are at least in your 20s! Give yourself time to enjoy your adolescence and youth, get a proper education, and grow up and learn to make unselfish decisions. Only after that should you consider becoming a parent. Also, please remember that your parents have raised their children. When you have a baby, he or she is your responsibility physically, emotionally, and financially. Do not expect your parents to do your job! For the sake of all children, let's make sure each child has mature parents who can successfully meet the challenges of parenting.

byL Dr. Sue Rex, Board Member,  South Carolina Campaign to Prevent Teen Pregnancy

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