Last week I talked about my hatred of parenting articles that are intent on pointing out the many ways our parenting skills fall short. Nobody is perfect and caring for one or more children doesn’t change that. But I’m here to tell you that perfection is not necessary to be a good parent. Here are another four of the many ways you’re already doing it right and why you’re kids love you more than anyone else in the world.
5. You Get Silly Like Nobody Is Watching (except your kids) – I recall shopping with my oldest daughter as a baby and being so wrapped up in singing to her as I pushed my cart along the aisles that I almost forgot I was in public. That is, until I caught a glimpse of someone giving me the “what’s up with her” look as she passed me by. At that moment I knew I would never feel weird about getting silly with my kids. My baby girl was happy and so was I and no amount of stares from strangers would change that. From the time they were babies, my kids not only had nicknames, but their own theme songs as well. Titles include, “Who’s Mommy’s Little Peanut” in both the original and remix formats and “She’s Syd-erific.” You’ll never hear them on the radio, but if you ever see me out in public you just might get to hear one.
6. Childhood Is NOT For The Sidelines – Childhood is a contact sport and that means playing and exploring the world with your kids. I made a comment to my husband’s co-worker on our day trip to Jellystone Campground a few weeks ago that “my husband is such a kid at heart.” I was watching him go down water slides both with and without the kids. She must have heard me wrong and said, “Yeah, you were really having fun on that jumping pillow.” I knew she was right about that fact so I didn’t correct her. I had just as much fun bouncing with my kids as they did. I love that my husband and I both get in there and play with our kids instead of just watching them. We started taking the kids on hikes. Whether it’s a river or a waterfall we find on our adventure, my husband plays in the water with them and we always have a good time.
7. Their Needs Come First – No matter what our money situation is, our kids needs come first. Sure, some people might think we’re struggling because we have to turn down invitations to dinner or outings sometimes, but our necessities are ALWAYS taken care of. My heart breaks for parents that really do struggle to meet their kids basic needs. I simply can’t imagine having to tell my child that there is no food to eat. I’ll go hungry before they ever do. I’m sure you feel the same way.
8. Teaching Them To Do Things Themselves – When they’re babies, I’m happy to obey their every command. When they’re old enough to acquire basic living skills, I am more than happy to teach my kids to do things themselves. Not only does it give us parents a much needed break from the near constant work that is parenting, but it makes them feel proud of themselves to be able to do things on their own.
When Hannah decided she was ready to take the training wheels off her bike and she fell the first few times her instinct was to blame me. She wanted it to be my fault for letting her take this step. I told her, “You’re going to fall. Falling is part of the process. You can decide to try anyway until you get it or you can put the training wheels back on, but you will not blame anyone, not even yourself for falling. It’s normal. It’s how we learn.” We can try to save them from the big mistakes, but the only way they gain confidence in themselves is if we give them the freedom to do things on their own.
I hope I’ve given you a little encouragement Moms and Dads because Lord knows parenting is hard enough without articles or people telling us all the things we’re doing wrong.