Several years back, when my youngest was still an infant, we had a mother’s helper with a thrill-seeking streak. Her dearest wish was to experience sky diving. One morning, she practically floated in the door. “I’m doing it! I’m going skydiving this weekend!” she announced. My pint-sized compatriots couldn’t wait to hear how it went. The following Monday, our friend shared her experience as she passed around several photographs.
It was terrifying but totally amazing!
I never felt so alive!
I would do it again in a minute!
Hmmm…remind you of anything?
Parenting can be that same kind of adventure. It’s scary, exhilarating, overwhelming at times, and yet we’d do it again in a heartbeat.
Did you know that the first time you skydive you are required to do what’s called a tandem jump? This means you must be physically strapped to an expert jumper. These pros are there to help give you your best shot – not just at surviving (which would certainly be a very good start!) but at being able to make the most of the experience. Sure, they’ll open the chute if you’re too frozen with terror to pull that ripcord. But the hope is that with their support you’ll not only make it to the bottom in one piece, but you’ll also be able to relax and enjoy the view along the way. After all, for most of us skydiving is a once-in-a-lifetime kind of experience. We want our money’s worth.
Wouldn’t it be fantastic to have a jumping partner with us as we launch ourselves into the unknowns of parenting? Someone who’s been at it long enough to know the drill? Someone who could talk us down from our parenting ledges when the going gets tough and surprise us with a laugh in the middle of the chaos?
My dear friend Karen is aiming to give parents just that. She’s a homeschooling mom with a background in early education and a passion for supporting moms and dads. She knows the frustration that comes from just barely making it day after day and the longing to do more than just survive this parenting gig, but to actually thrive. She’s a truly gifted woman, who possesses not only an abundance of resources and parenting tips but also a wonderful knack for helping parents see things from a new perspective.
Her new website, ripcordparenting.com will be up and running very soon. In the meantime, she’s looking for some volunteers who’d be willing to try out some “tandem parenting” as her site undergoes beta testing. If the thrill-seeker in you is intrigued, check out what Karen has to say:
Greetings, friends of Nicole’s! I am starting a website – ripcordparenting.com – a place of connection and sanity for parents of young children. The idea has been developing over many months, moving perhaps a bit more slowly than I would wish because of a thing I have called tendinosis, a bit like arthritis but takes place in the tendons, which has given me extremely limited use of both hands and thumbs.
I don’t have hands that work really well right now, but I do have my voice, my heart, and my mind. I see lots of parents of young children struggling, weighed down by anxiety and fear, and I really want to help those parents.
I am developing a kit of almost-daily emails with ideas, some laughs, quotes and recipes for these parents, and I would like to ask you to help me beta test it. The actual kit, which I am calling the Tandem Parenting Jump Kit, will be three months of emails every Monday through Saturday. What I would ask of you is that you consider participating in a two-week beta test, in which you would receive tips and ideas in your inbox six days a week for two weeks, starting the first week in December. Then, I would ask you to review it for me: did it help you? Do you think it would help an anxious, struggling parent? How could I improve it? Were there too many exclamation points?
To sign up to be part of the beta test, please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org, and thank you so much for your help!
To learn more about Karen’s background, check out her superb blog, The Stone Age Techie.