The Childrogen Cycle

Childrogen Cycle
Childrogen Cycle

The Childrogen Cycle

Remember those cycles from middle school science class?  The carbon cycle?  The nitrogen cycle?  I only remember them because I’m re-learning them now along with my kids as they do their homework.  And we all complained that we’d never use that information!  Apparently it has something to do with global warming too.  Who knew?

Let me refresh your memory-  trees make oxygen through photosynthesis.  We breathe the oxygen/ and create carbon-dioxide.  Trees like that.  It’s much more complicated when you weigh in all the other factors, but for now let’s just leave it at that:  Oxygen and carbon dioxide go round and round as we live in harmony.  Ish.

Kids are like that.  Every breath of hot air you exhale gets you loads of nourishing magic fresh air back from those kids.  Every load of laundry gets you all the fun things that put grass stains on the knees of the jeans.  If you’re lucky, at least a little milk comes out of your nose for every gallon you buy.  Birthday party expenses get you laughter and chocolate cake.  For every Friday night you don’t spend out on the town partying with your friends, you get a Friday night at home with your family.  And so on.  It’s a cycle that, at least in my case, keeps me growing as a person.  The more you grow as a person, the more your kids grow as people, and the more they grow, the more likely they are to have young of their own who hang out under your tree.  Everybody wins.

As an adult, how often would you have stopped to play at the park if you hadn’t had children?  Watched cartoons on a rainy day?  Played video games?  Colored pictures?  Baked cookies?  Spent time at a Little League ball park?  Gone sledding on a snow day?  Drive your shopping cart like it’s a race car?

When I hear parents joke about what their lives ‘have become’ now that they have kids, sometimes it’s hard to tell for sure if they’re joking, or feeling at least a bit restrained…  and I do it myself:

“It’s Saturday night and I’m shopping for science fair project materials!  #partyanimal”

I myself am about 97% joking and at the same time maybe 3% wishing I were at the drag strip trying to squeeze 0.05 seconds more out of my hot rod, even if it meant scattering expensive go-fast parts that I’d have to spend all next week fixing.  Can’t afford that sort of time or carnage these days, what with science fair materials and new wardrobes to buy for growing kids every season!

It’s nature’s way of recycling you!  Yet, for it to work, you have to send your hot air in the right direction, and you have to inhale the magic.  It’s all too easy to fall into a spiral of errands, bills to pay, homework to tutor, etc, and forget to take a fresh breath of cartoons, coloring books, and chocolate cake.  If all you do is blow hot air and never inhale the magic, well, the cycle is broken and nobody grows.  You know how your breathing gets really shallow when you’re anxious or stressed, and you suddenly realize you’ve almost stopped breathing?  This is why they tell you deep breaths are important.  You need a big breath of ‘freshly bathed toddler in pajamas with blanky’ after you almost suffocate on a big cloud of bills.

You have to color.  You have to go sledding.  You have to let the dog clean up the mess of milk that just came out of your nose.  You have to drive your shopping cart recklessly.  You have to sing along no matter how bad you sound.  You have to go with it.  Did I mention that, if you do, everybody wins?

Cheers from The Cycle

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