Tiger Mamma with PPP

Posted by jael on Mar 4, 2011 in Parenting, Spiritual Journey |

The confessional nature of blogs and memoirs lend themselves to stark admissions.

At brokenhallelujah.org,  I resolve to balance my angst with Praise.

Perfectly timed, my devotion this morning from Sarah Young’s Jesus Calling, called out to me personally with the sentence, “Refuse to WORRY! … The best defense is continual communication with Me, richly seasoned with thanksgiving.”

I was a ready audience for her brilliant reflection of His living word this morning as I had worked myself into an absolute lather. I breakfasted with the beast worry, and was nigh unto gnawing on the drumstick of my own parental esteem when one of my Sisters patiently pointed me back to Praise.

The issue of my discontent is the pressure on my children to perform and the pressure I feel as a parent to train and support them to preform on ever increasing measures and misson-creeping venues. Long story short, my son will be in 8th grade next year, and it is time for us to look ahead in regard to his course work and extra curricular activities so that he enjoys a smooth transition into high school.

That sounds really calm and rational, right?

Well lucky for you that you missed the very snoggy and irrationally moist in-between when I deduced that I had not only ruined his entire education, but subjected him to a life of mediocrity, and also simultaneously derailed our daughters futures too because at the tender ages of 12, 10, 9 and 5 they remain generalists without a domain they dominate. And I mean like S&M dominate, tie other children-up as hostages and ignore their safe words kind of dominate we now apparently value as a society.

The teams they play on when they are 8-12 determine if they have any chance of being high school players. It simply baffles me how difficult it is for athletes to get a spot on a JV high school team. Now, there’s a glaring collegiate dynamic in operation in high school athletics, bands and orchestras. Without years of practice and specially developed skills, kids with the simple desire to learn, do not make the cut. Gone is the time you could figure out what you are good at in high school.

The courses 7th and 8th graders take determine their high school track. Furthermore, these courses open and close future college doors.

7th and 8th graders are 12 and 13 years-old, immature, impulsive, and in most cases, simply not ready for that kind of pressure.

I also find that the only thing that parents find more taboo to talk about besides sex, drugs and suicide is the pressure parents feel to witness the hypercompetition their children face constantly as they vie for space and primacy. It’s a wonder more parents don’t lose their libido, take antidepressants, quit their lives or run away from home.

A horrendous social SNAFU, a communal knot that rivals a mental disorder; it has been christened, PPP, Pressured Parents Phenomenon, as if the DSM-5 didn’t already have the psychiatric community in a big enough uproar. We’ve got language for it now. These cultural trends tide with enough prevalence that we needed to name it. In the course of one academic year, the terms PPP, Tiger Mom and Race to No Where have become part of our parental vernacular to describe the stressed out condition of our precious families.

The Catch 22s created are inevitable:

No, I don’t want to be a Tiger Mom, but neither do I want your Tiger Mom children to kick my childrens’ asses.

Yes, I am often unsure where the race ends, but if I pull my children out, your kid will run divots into my kid’s forehead with his cleats.

No, I don’t want to put pressure on my children, but if I don’t, how can they keep up with yours, especially when you just enrolled them in continuous, summer sessions of ________fill in the blank_______.

Yes, I am aware that pushing my child to excel keeps his drive as an external force when he should be passionate about what he pursues, but we’ve invested money we don’t really have in this so he can compete, and we can’t afford to start all over with something else now.

All the chase escalates my fear that our children will not become happy, successful adults.

The fear pollinates the worry.

And the Voice of Voices, the keeper of all Shepards, His quiet still Peace drowns in the background noise of my inward process.

I cannot hear Him when I am on the throne or place my children on the throne.

I cannot finish the race set before me without His Love and Word.

Left to my own devices, I am a Tiger Mamma with PPP.

Only when I Partner with the Perfect Parent, may I receive and extend Grace.

Well Your faith was strong but you needed proof
You saw her bathing on the roof
Her beauty and the moonlight overthrew you
she tied you to her kitchen chair
And she broke your throne and she cut your hair
And from your lips she drew the Hallelujah

Well baby I’ve been here before
I’ve seen this room and I’ve walked this floor
I used to live alone before I knew ya
I’ve seen your flag on the marble arch
Love is not a victory march
It’s a cold and it’s a broken Hallelujah


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