anyone can give birth...but parenting requires that you show up and partake of what's offered. it means that sometimes you read dr. suess rather than zane. you don't get to be sick because all the kids are, you get to be nurse. you play soccer, attend plays and cheer for tree #6 just like they were the lead (because in your eyes they were). we make pancakes and fortify them to go out into the world and discover it's wonder. you laugh at knock knock jokes and cry for your 6 year old's friendship broken in minutes. also repaired in minutes but you are still crying. parenting requires that you participate in your child(ren)'s life not just hover around the fringes. you become or relive 2 or 8 or 16 again because it lends to your ability to be undersanding. you struggle though 4th grade homework and question whether you really are "smarter than a 5th grader". you coo at artwork, scared to ask "what is it" least it be you(and secretly wonder if they are picasso). they grow up and move on to different stages...and deep down we ponder whether or not we got it right . everyone tells me i am the best parts of both my parents and i have to agree. now as an adult, with children of my own... i realize i was actually raised. my parents showed up to the table, partook of what was offered and i am better for it.