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Are children worth $1/4 million?

I ask you: is your child worth $226,920?

The US Department of Agriculture (don’t ask me why this particular Department) every year calculates the cost of raising a child from birth through its first 17 years. That’s up to age 18, if you’re not familiar with the American “through” instead of saying the British “ 18 years of age”. OK, my American pals, I’m not really getting at you for not speaking Canadian, let alone English English.

In the year of 2010, the Department reportsĀ  the cost to raise a child through 17 years was $266,920. Hm! That doesn’t even include post-secondary education. We had (still have) five children. Are they worth $1,134,600? More than a trifle over ONE MILLION Dollars?

Darn right they were/are. In this day and age, to have five married families with eleven children – our grandchildren – with no divorces or separations is something of which a parent may be justly proud. Every hour we spent with them was worth more than money can represent.

We enjoyed every hour with our kids – well, almost every hour, except when they got to their teens and thought (nay, knew) they knew better than their parents. After their teens, that opinion modified somewhat, fortunately. Now, we and they just know that each has her or his own levels and individualised areas of knowledge and none of us knows everything.

When they were growing up, we did enjoy going to the Pan Am gamesin Winnipeg, when we lived there; sailing on Lake Winnipeg;

Gimli at Lake Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada
Image via Wikipedia

road trips and camping in the Rockies; a six-week tour in a small, but well-designed camper bus, in Europe; a Christmas and New Year in the Cayman Islands; mucking out stalls when we had a stables in Montreal; riding; going to their soccer, ringette and ice hockey games; watching their swimming events, both racing and synchronised; being proud parents when one of our tribe was tossing batons in the Grey Cup parade in Toronto; seeing them graduate from various schools, colleges and universities; watching their courtships and eventual marriages; and, finally, enjoying our grandchildren.

And after that, seeing pay-back for all we had done so lovingly in their struggles with their own children!

So, it really doesn’t matter from any point of view how much the average child costs to raise, for, no matter how much young people can be told that, they will still fall in love and they will still have their own children. Ad infinitem!