I’m so happy it’s Election Day. I’m so happy I won’t have to watch any more terrible commercials when I’m trying my hardest to forget about reality while watching reality TV. I’m so glad I won’t get any more political phone calls. I’m so excited to log into Facebook and not see all of my friends’ political beliefs streaming through my news feed. And I’m so glad I voted early.
I have to say the best part of this election season has been seeing it through my kids’ eyes. Our older two kids are seven and eight – the perfect mix of intelligence and innocence in my opinion – especially compared to a two-year-old’s manic mood swings.
My husband and I don’t usually talk politics around the house much – I know some families do – we’re just not one of them. But this is our first presidential election year where our kids have a clue that there is something big happening so we’ve talked about it more. Their teachers are talking about it, and their friends are doing informal polls (our six-kid carpool’s informal result was Romney 4, Obama 2). So now the kids have formed their own opinions.
We’re in such a sweet spot. I haven’t told them which way I voted – or which way to vote – and I think it’s hilarious to watch their thought process. My daughter wholeheartedly believes Obama should win again because he already has the job. (I remember thinking the exact same way with Reagan.) My son thinks “Romany” should win because his friends think so. Actually, I bet many adults vote for the same reasons. They have no clue about the social issues. No clue about the economy. No clue what’s at stake.
This is a defining moment in their young lives in that they’ll remember which way the election went and how we as parents reacted. But they won’t remember the mud-slinging, the protests, and the nasty political ads. To them, the president will be someone who keeps us safe (unless we tell them otherwise), and everything else is just a blurry conversation between adults.
Their innocence is so refreshing. It’s so much better than listening to some Gallup poll numbers; it’s so much less stressful than thinking about the Big Issues. It’s surreal and scary to think in four years they will be eleven-and twelve-year-olds with attitudes and opinions and big choices ahead.
It’s one of my absolute favorite parts of being a parent – seeing “reality” through my kids’ eyes. Amidst the constant news streaming today, I hope you’re able to enjoy a sweet parenting moment and realize the country’s future is literally in our Mama hands.
What did you learn from your kids during the election?