Sitting here trying to process what it means to be a parent and how a parent should act. The complexity of that statement is in itself hard to grasp. At the moment I feel like a child still learning while I raise two daughters that seem to be catching up to me.
Learning when and when not to interject my opinion and how to step back is proving to be the most difficult part of raising children at the moment.
“If you can control your behavior when everything around you is out of control, you can model for your children a valuable lesson in patience and understanding and snatch an opportunity to shape character”. – Jane Clayson Johnson, I Am a Mother
When I was younger my motivations were much different than today I acted partly out of anger and spite. I said to myself “I will be a better parent than my mother and father”. I know they will read this so now that I’m an adult and a parent let me also say I know you did the best you could with what you had and love you both very much.
I still think about life before I had children and what that looked like, all I wanted was stability, something of my own, a family and to be something for someone that I didn’t have growing up. I believed that getting married, having children and moving on from everything would give me a feeling of importance that I desired so much. Over the last week it has been a roller-coaster of ups and downs, mostly due to how others lives are intertwined with ours. My daughter’s have been affected by the actions in a way that I haven’t processed yet. I see some of me and I see some of their mother; both come with very unique challenges.
“Leave your pride, ego, and narcissism somewhere else. Reactions from those parts of you will reinforce your children’s most primitive fears”. – Henry Cloud
I have boasted my prideful accomplishments by the “success” of my life and it has been in some cases more important than others feelings or needs. Many years later and a few “non successes” I see I’m not always right, far from perfect and what I based my opinion of success was not exactly accomplishable. I see success in how my children interact with others, how they are driven and how they respond to life. Every stage of raising children has had its own struggles and triumphs, sometimes changing drastically and quicker than I can respond to. Last night was a great example.
During a great walk with my girls I witnessed smiles, anger and tears, aggression and sadness followed by empathy and understanding. Now that I have the time to process everything, all I think about is how I should have responded, how I did respond and now I can come up with hundreds of things I should have said but missed out on the opportunity.
This parenting thing is messy..