Thursday, October 11, 2012

31 Days of Repetitive Parenting: Day 11 "Someday you'll be smarter than me, but today is not that day."

Hubby and I come from an educated background.  Some of our friends might consider us academic, while our academic friends would probably laugh at that description of us.  (I'd have to agree with our academic friends on this one!)

We met & married in grad school!
As much as we appreciate learning and teaching, we are far from the academic world in which we met.  It seems like a life time away and yet, on occasion, all those years of studying come in handy in parenting.  It may be through a nugget of truth that comes hurdling back from the deep recesses of my brain in order to answer some obscure question.  Other times it may just provide me with enough clout to remind my kids that one day they'll be smarter than me, but that day has not yet arrived!

Not exactly sure when we first pulled out this favorite saying of ours, but I know it was fairly early.  I'm guessing in nursery school, when they were first introduced to a more formal school setting.  In fact, when I home schooled Darlin' in kindergarten, she gave me a hard time because I did not do things the same way as her nursery school teachers had - most notably I did not wear an apron!

During the elementary years, I recall arguing and debating with our son over pronunciations of creatures found in CS Lewis' Chronicles of Narnia.  Hubby and I were pretty confident in our Narnian knowledge, but it took some persuading Bud.  Eventually, he conceded that we were still smarter than him.

Now, just in case you were wondering, we proudly recognize when we realize that they have surpassed our knowledge in a particular skill set.  We want to give credit where credit is due.

Pretty sure my kids have superseded me in several areas of academia and music.  Within a couple of years of Suzuki piano they began to play well above my six years of traditional piano lessons ability.  I am in awe of their knowledge of music theory and their talent on more than one musical instrument.

They have definitely been enjoying the fact, (for years!) that their mathematical skills far outweigh my mere elementary school level arithmetic.  As I find math rather tedious and loathsome, this was one area in which I was eager to declare them my superiors and make use of the walking calculators within my reach when estimating percentages for a tip!

As their sphere of knowledge increased, so did the cocky attitude.  Therefore, it became a little more important to repeat the phrase, "Some day you'll be smarter than me, but today is not that day."  Mostly, it has been necessary to remind them that there are things they still have yet to learn and that, in some areas of scholarship, Mom and Dad still have a brain.
GCTS Graduation in 1990
Just this morning, as Bud was looking over the PSAT practice test book, we laughingly pulled out this trusty phrase.  It took Hubby turning to the correct page to point out that it did indeed include a practice test inside - hence the label "PRACTICE TEST' in big bold words.  Fortunately, our son was slightly amused in his presumptive gaff and so our jovial response did not ruffle any teenage feathers.

Recently our teens have begun to challenge this statement by comparing us to their high school teachers.  Many of these teachers are fresh out of college, have only been teaching for a few years (if that) and would easily be mistaken for teenagers if they donned a school uniform!  Pride at stake, I balked at the mere suggestion, before heading to back to school night this year.  Upon my return, I humbly conceded that they were right, these young whippersnappers certainly know way more in their particular field than I do!  However, I'm pretty sure they have a little further to go to match Hubby (which just means he gets to help more in the homework department!)

Each day our kids impress us with the knowledge they have gleaned and the skills they have acquired.  Conversely, they also say or do something that reveals they have so much more to learn.

"Some day you'll be smarter than me, but today is not that day."  A lesson learned through repetition!

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