Friday, 4 March 2011

Personally responsible?

On Tuesday we had a family trip to the dentist.  Big Grin (3) was as good as gold and opened her mouth and seemed to thoroughly enjoy the experience.  Little Feet (nearly 5) had already decided that morning she wasn't going to cooperate and flatly refused to open her mouth.  In her defence, she is slightly man-phobic, and being tactile isn't her thing, so it wasn't going to go well anyway.  The Mister and I were both lauded for our own teeth-brushing, and informed that we were in the dentist's top 2%, and according to him, he's picky.  He isn't too worried about not being able to see Little Feet's teeth as hopefully we'll be taking care of her teeth as well as our own.  When we got home I said to The Mister that I would feel personally responsible if either of the girls ever got tooth decay.  Somewhere along the line I wouldn't've been doing my job properly.

That got me thinking.  Would I feel the same if they got heart disease from leading a sedentry lifestyle?  Or dropped litter?  Or robbed a bank?  Or were mean to other kids at school?  Or turned their backs on God?  How far am I responsible for the choices they make in their lives?  This parenting lark is pretty heavy.  We pray; we follow the Bible's guidance; we try to impart the good stuff, to live the good stuff; we teach them to make good choices; but ultimately we leave them in God's hands.

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