Allow me to recap. I never had kids. I never wanted any and as I found later, I couldn’t anyway. I have never regretted it especially because I have two nephews and three nieces I try to devote myself to as much as I possible. They have become a great source of joy and given me a purpose, which is to try to make them happy and be there for them. I’m their aunt and friend, not their parent, so I get to enjoy the benefits of those conversations they feel they can´t have with their parents. We can talk openly about anything, and I give them adult feed back through my own personal stories, which I hope will prevent them from making the same mistakes I made.
This summer against everyone’s judgment, I brought them over to Spain for a month. Nobody thought it was a good idea, especially financially, but I did it anyway. I thought it would help them grow, by experiencing the freedom and safety Spain delivers, especially to teens. I hoped the exposure to the free, politically incorrect and fun culture would make an impact. I think it has. I’ve allowed them to roam free and do whatever they wanted and yes, spoiled them rotten. Why not? This is their time to enjoy life and as adults know, it doesn’t get easier as we grow older.
I won’t know for sure how this trip has impacted them until they get back to their home and, maybe, even years later, but this trip has certainly taught me a few things about life with children and myself. I’m surprised that I could actually do it and only lose my calm once and even then, hardly raised my voice. I was frustrated with them, but it only lasted a couple of minutes, because I was able to quickly walk in their shoes and remember how I was at their age. They are good kids, especially when I compare them to me as a teen.
It has been a great experience for me. I have come through the experience realizing I have no anger issues, especially when it comes to kids. I understand too well the growing pains they are going through which are a rite of passage. I would do this summer all over again, a month in an apartment in Spain with my nephew and nieces. I would do it again, even if it meant taking away from my own needs to make them happy. They are my family, my life, and it’s exciting to see how enthusiastic they are about their own lives and futures. It’s their time and a privilege to see them grow.
This is my life, my family, and they are the best investment towards their happiness, and my own, as I sit and watch them enjoy themselves in simple ways. I count myself fortunate to be a part of it.