Growing up again

I cannot read Dr. Seuss’s Oh, The Places You’ll Go! to my son without welling up with huge, mama-bear tears. 

Wherever you fly, you’ll be best of the best. 

Wherever you go, you will top all the rest.

Except when you don’t.

Because, sometimes, you won’t.

I’m sorry to say so but, sadly, it’s true that Bang-ups

and Hang-ups can happen to you.

That passage gets me every time. I choke back the tears and clear my throat, hoping my kid won’t notice. (I can’t be the only one who does this, right?)

It kills me to think about my kid being on his own in a place where I won’t even have the illusion of protecting him from life’s hang ups, and where he’ll have to face hard realities without Mom or Dad. 

His innocence will gradually erode away — alas, like mine has — and he’ll have to manage the Great Balancing Act Seuss describes. 

Why does this hurt so much?

I think it’s because we’re all on this journey of growing up. And, the truth is, growing up is even hard for us grownups. 

Parenting, however, forces our hand: Someone is counting on us.

So we have to go to bed early (lest we not sleep much at all), stop drinking so much (so we can deal with colic and night feedings), start saving for our kids’ college (while paying off our own) and eat right/visit the doctor and/or the gym (or get a spouse to do so). 

We even have to think about death: Yes, we have to write our wills.

Indeed, it is from this very mindset that I’ve decided to add a new department to the magazine called #adulting. A rotating cast of local parents and experts will author #adulting in an effort to address common challenges. 

This month’s #adulting kickoff is about estate planning. Seriously, it’s time to ask yourself: What is the plan if you and your spouse leave this world?

In this issue, you’ll also find that our baby and toddler columnist have switched places — and they’ve renamed the columns, too: Jen Wittes, a mother of two and postpartum doula, will write Bump, Birth & Baby, and Shannon Keough, currently wrestling with two little rascals, will author The Uncensored Toddler.

Eric Braun — who has guided us in family finances with Grows on Trees for three years — will retire his monthly column. But he’ll still write for us periodically as part of #adulting, because money is a huge issue for families! 

I hope you enjoy the changes. 

Will they succeed? 

It’s “98 and ¾ percent guaranteed!”

Sarah Jackson, Editor


Sarah Jackson is the Editor of Minnesota Parent magazine. She lives in Minnetonka with her 8-year-old son. Write her at editor@mnparent.com.