It's a heavy responsibility we carry as parents. USDA estimated in 2009 that it can cost parents over $200,000 to raise a child from infancy to age 18. Quite a hard number to take in all at once, especially having multiple children.
But these numbers don't scare me; in my opinion, the financial responsibility of raising a child is the most straightforward to tackle. What affects me, and therefore challenges me more, is to guide the formation of their character.
This weekend was my second son's First Communion. We dressed him in his shirt, tie and slacks, packed the Church almost an hour before Mass began with probably a hundred other families, and watched him take this monumental Sacrament. I was anxious and I sobbed during the Homily, along with other parents in the crowd.
The tears were not of sadness, a reminder that our childen are growing up. Instead, they are of joy, and of relief, that the thing, this Tiwala in God, has been passed down, and that he feels it too.
I want him to know that this life is only a grain of sand in the beach of Heaven. That the world doesn't revolve around him only and his happiness. That life is day to day, and lived the best way he can. And that sorrow may come, but Tiwala in God will bring him through.
I made Big C a one-decade Rosary for his special day, with the center actually given to me by the dear lady at the church gift shop. She had several rosaries that were broken, and she needed a good home for its parts. I jumped at her generosity!
My brother gave each of my children a Rosary blessed by the Pope in Rome, but I made him a more portable one to keep in his pockets. I grew up praying the rosary and preferred my small thumb Rosary, as it was discreet. I took it with me everywhere. So, I thought a smaller Rosary to augment his beautiful Italian beads would be perfect.
I know these are all just first steps, he is only 8 after all. But I'll take these small triumphs, and have Tiwala in not just God, but in my own son as well.
I hope you all had a wonderful weekend!