I’m Down With OPK
That stands for Other People's Kids. There is something special about developing a friendship with Other People's Kids. First of all, kids are (for the most part) awesome. Secondly, they're not your kids so you don't have to boss them around and they clearly appreciate that.
So many of my friends have kids that it's rare that more than a couple days goes by where I don't get an opportunity to hang out with the little rascals. Heck, I was even in the room when Angie HAD her two kids. (That's the best birth control on the planet, by the way.) To this day I wonder why I was there for the first but you really have to wonder why I'd return for that awesomeness a second time.
Anyway, we do those things because we love our friends and their kids are extensions of our favorite people. Hopefully. I love seeing the facial similarities, social habits that are inherited and just knowing that Kendra is going to turn out to be a mini-Kim.
When you don't have your own kids, make every effort to hang out with your friends' kids. Not only are you an important piece of their memory and development whether you like it or not but when those guys grow up, they'll remember you more clearly than you think. The good stuff and the bad stuff. Don't you remember your Mom's best friends? I sure so. Some of those ladies were completely rad. Others were freakin' useless ding-dongs. The point is: I remember. And so will your friends' kids.
Get on the phone and say hi to your "nephew" across the country or volunteer to take your neighbor's kids to the park this weekend. Teach them stuff. Talk to them like adults and really listen to what they're saying back to you. You'll not only learn a thing or two, but your neighbor could probably use a few hours break, anyway. They are, afterall, HER kids. -Michelle