If I were to ask you to describe parenting to me, how would you do it? Would you start with raising children that eat, healthy balanced meals? Children who know how to do their chores, go to bed on time, get along with their siblings and are obedient. If they are young adults now, would you say, parenting is raising a person to become a respectable member of society
Although, these would be admirable answers, they would be incomplete. Thinking of our parenting by those results puts a lot a pressure on us. Depending on the personality, stress levels, experience, living environment, tech and personal influences that exist in our child’s world, that level of measure may become unrealistic. As well as disappointing.
Without taking those goals off the table of raising a respectable, confident person that survives and thrives in society off the table, let’s explore a few foundational truths that would serve as a better gage for our parenting journey.
Truth #1: You Are A Forever Parent
Consider this, once you became a parent, you are forever a parent. There will never be a time moving forward that you will not be parent to your child. Even when they turn 80, or you go to Heaven before them…you are still a parent.
This is encouraging news because it sets the stage for how long you have to get it right. It sets an invisible timer on your parenting and the timer is forever. Initially, I was going to add, a lifetime, but honestly, it goes beyond that. It goes into generations. Even after death, your seed will still refer to you as-you guessed it…a parent!
So, what does this mean for you and me. It means we have a lifetime to work on being consistent and committed to pouring in, guiding and supporting our children. It means we get an eternity to enjoy the impact that we made every single day.
Pace yourself. Be patient with your parenting. Learn along the way. Get better at being the parent you want to be. Give your child the best you have to offer at every stage of their life. You qualify for the longevity and legacy of parenting. What a privilege.
Truth #2: You Are the Best Parent for Your Child
After realizing you really cannot lose your parenting job, then you need to understand that you are the best person for the job.
The first realization is this, our biological children come from our loins, they are a seed from our very being. Even our adopted or blended family children get to experience our values, our love and our intent to see them succeed.
Our children are in the best position they can be in, connected to the family they are supposed to be a part of. There are no accidents with this.
The challenge is how we are growing in our roles as parents. The challenge is the choices we are making in the direction of our children. If our intent is to love, support, provide and offer guidance through life, then we qualify. Of course, if our motives are to create stressful environments or fostering ill intent toward our children, then this does not apply.
With all that is within you, if you are sacrificing while maturing in how you show love toward your children, you are the best parent for your child. Accept this and give yourself permission to grow in this truth. Free yourself from the burden of feeling like you must be more or do more. Your love at this level is perfect for your child at theirs. Keep growing, keep going, keep loving and you will see this truth become a reality for your life.
Truth #3: Your Parenting Is Empowered by Your Child’s Personality
As parents we often feel the frustration of a rebellious child or a child that seems to be a little different than our other respectable, mild mannered children. I smile when I hear parents in coaching sessions become perplexed by the “questionable” child. I smile because, I have always felt God has a sense of humor, but more importantly, I believe God does that on purpose to keep us balanced as parents.
The thing that very few of us consider is that I am, by design, the perfect parent for my child. This assignment of life is unique to me. You have seen other children with their parents and thought, “I would not take that.” You are right, you probably would not…but that is why…they are not your child. Your child and children are all that you are equipped to handle. That is good news.
As parents, we start off with a set of rules, boundaries and limits when our children are young. We set the rules in place, make sure they are understood, and we hold our position on those rules for the rest of our child’s life. Can you relate to this? Do you or do you know someone who kept a strict set of the same rules throughout the child’s development? When I was younger, my grandma never let us sit on the couch with the plastic on it. When we got older, we still could not sit on the same couch, with the same plastic on it. I like to think we were less likely to jump on the “good” furniture as adults.
All we have to recognize here, is that our parenting should evolve with our child’s personality. As our children grow and mature, are attracted to different interest, we should adjust our parenting to meet their current needs or the current goals that we see in their development. At one stage of your parenting, you are teaching potty training, but at whole other stage, you are preparing for prom. Those two children, although the same person, are at two different levels in their life. Our children need different things at different stages of life. Our parenting can be empowered to meet those needs based on the personality of our children. Giving a tailor made fit along the way.
Parenting is a tough job and requires so much, but we do not have to put unnecessary pressure on us. We can relieve some of the burdens we place on ourselves, if we can grasp these truths. Just by us being a parent is already a success. We are here for the long haul, we qualify, and we can make adjustments relative to our child’s development and personality. You got this mom! You got this dad!
Be sure to check out the sister article, Parenting Need to Knows for further encouragement.
About the Author