The majority of us, hopefully, all of us, never look at our newborn baby and think, “I hope you are a menace to society.” “I hope when you don’t get something, you throw a huge fit and tell everyone where to go.” I hope you go out and see how much you can get, without giving anything back.”
No, we are not looking at that fresh, unspoiled baby thinking destructive thoughts like that. We want a responsible, wise, patient, loving, contributing, beautiful, humble, force for good, human being that is a mix of yours and your husband’s best features.
We often have great plans for our children when they are little. We watch them play and imagine what will they be when they’re older?
Oh, he’s playing with blocks? He is going to be an architect.
Oh, she loves to read? She is going to be an author.
Oh, he ate his boogers? He’s curious.
But having 6 kids, 4 of them being teenagers, I am here to tell you, it does not work out the way you think it will. One time my two oldest smeared poop all over the walls when they were ages 1 and 2. They are going to be artists! Or they are going to go around town and graffiti it up. Who knows how that cookie will crumble. What I do know, is that as parents we need to try our best to raise them to be positive contributors in this world. To have integrity, to see that lying is a problem, blame shifting and not taking responsibility is a problem. Don’t get me wrong, they will lie, they will try and get out of responsibilites, but we need to keep teaching and not give up. We are not trying to replace their Savior. Jesus is the only one who can save, we are just teaching. That would be too much on our weak shoulders. Our kids have free agency, sometimes I wish they didn’t, but they do. They are going to do things over and over again that has us scratching our heads or brining us to our knees in tears and prayer. I have been there a few times and it is gut wrenching.
In every trial, we need to take a step back and ask, what is the lesson here? What can we learn from this? We may not be able to watch their every step but we can teach them about; (1) honesty, (2) responsibility, and (3) humility. Hold them accountable in their actions. Yes, they have the free will to do whatever they want, but they do not have the choice of their consequences. We want them to learn these lessons while in our home; before they leave and make bigger mistakes and have bigger consequences that are out of our hands. Let them learn these hard lessons while you’re able to guide them. LET THEM FALL!! Let them fall so they can feel how horrible it is and then teach them to rise back up stronger and more determined. Don’t cover for them even though you know they’re at fault. You are not doing them any favors trust me I have seen it play out. Hold them accountable.
Being a parent is a rollercoaster of emotions. Somedays I really love my kids and somedays I’m like…get out. That’s okay, I am human too and I am learning and growing just like they are, just like everyone else is in this world. If we are to see some positive change in our country we have to start at home. Honesty. Responsibility. Humility.