I find myself in discussions with so many people about parenting these days. Though I have only been a parent for a little over 3.5 years, I now have three kids and feel that I am somewhat knowledgeable on the subject. Though I have not experienced the full range of joys, emotions and hardships that come with parenting, I do know that my children will show many of the same characteristics that they see me express throughout their time under my care.
I came across this video a while back when it came out and it brought me to tears. I watched it again just a moment ago and it once again put tears in my eyes. I know that my kids will pick up some bad habits from me but what really makes me sad is that there are a lot of people out there that are raising kids just as messed up as they are. I am going to be honest and say that each and every one of us is messed up in one way or another. We all have bad habits and stuff that makes us imperfect. What hurts is when I see people act horribly to other people in front of their children. Youtube is full of videos of it happening and I see it just about every time I drive through my town or go anywhere there might be many people in one place. It breaks my heart.
I don’t know of one parent personally that does not want more for their child than they had growing up. This is why I have a hard time understanding why some people are so bad in front of their own children. They don’t seem to understand that their child is a sponge and will soak up as much as possible from their parent, the one who is suppose to love and care for them the most. Though this video is a bit more dramatic than you see in real life it paints a picture of what many kids will grow up to become.
My parents were not perfect. I realize that I carry some of their bad habits. I also have many of their good qualities as well. I was raised to listen to and respect people and because of this, and a lot of God’s grace, I have been around some great people in my life. I have also made a lot of bad decisions as well. Nobody is perfect and I am not saying that I or anybody else will ever achieve this “perfection” that books try to teach us or parenting blogs try to showcase. What we do need to try to do, is try. I don’t think that people try very hard these days. We live in a selfish society. We want what “we” want. People just get in the way and our kids definitely get in the way of us getting what we feel we deserve. That is the mentality of many. It’s not my mentality, though I am not going to lie and say I have not considered what I could be doing rather than dealing with three screaming kids. I made a choice.
I made a choice to love my children. I made a choice to raise them to the best of my ability. Even when I feel like I don’t have anything to give, I know that they need me and I need to find something to offer them. I can not leave their upbringing to anyone other than myself and my family. I must surround my children with the influences I want them to have so they can learn what it means to be a trustworthy person and have integrity. Today the world believes that it is the responsibility of the school system and other caretakers to raise our children. We put kids in daycare for 12 hours each day because we “need” to work. We live in a world where we have to work. This is wrong, but for many, there is no other choice. The result, is broken kids who don’t know who they belong to.
My kids will grow up knowing they belong to me and that their number one source of earthly love will come from their Mother and I. I will curb my anger, frustrations or bad habits so that they have the best chance of becoming better than I. I will show them what it means to be loved each day so that they too can love others. When I get mad, I will show compassion and hold back immediate judgement so that they will do the same to people. I will teach them to value, so that they do not value money and things over people and experiences.
It’s going to be hard, but it’s worth it. If we are not being an example to our children who will? I would rather my kids have nothing but love and a roof over their head than tons of toys but no parent at home.
I can go on forever about this but I will digress and just say this…
I have messed up many things in my life but I won’t mess up my kids.