Life isn’t a simple ride, and becoming a parent is a life game changer. Just like new babies discover and learn to be human, parents learn to parent. How to be a good parent relies heavily on your mindset.
It is not a simple transformation and there’s a steep learning curve that requires fast comprehension. Some parts are natural, but A LOT of it is not. WHY? Because we are independent (self-centered, by nature) people who are abruptly responsible for keeping another person alive, while simultaneously teaching them how to be moral, productive, conscious human beings that will live a good, decent life.
UHHHH, YEAH >>>>> that’s a tall order.
Some weeks before Banks (my first born babe) was born, I mildly freaked the freak out.
“What were we thinking?”
“How are we going to handle this?”
“You travel too much and I don’t want to do this alone!”
“I’m not ready. I don’t think I’m going to be good at this.”
“Why is this happening? I like my life, I don’t want that all to change.”
“What if something really bad happens to my child, I don’t want to face that!”
“I’m an OK person, not great, and how am I going to be mentally capable of teaching our child everything, while not growing them up in dysfunction?!”
There were many more questions, but these give you a glimpse, haha. I don’t think it’s uncommon to have “before baby jitters”, in fact, I’m just going to proclaim, it’s COMPLETELY normal. I believe it would be utterly ABNORMAL if you didn’t have these thoughts because that may just indicate you are emotionally messed up (just sayin’).
We are never prepared for the things that change us the most.
Think about it. What in your life has impacted you the most in a positive way? I’m sure it’s not something that was perfectly planned and developed from beginning to end. Most of the biggest lessons in life happen out of change, and usually unexpected change.
We can try to encapsulate every possibility and have an action plan ready in response, but that’s an impossibility because perfect doesn’t exist and change is inevitable! Having a child is change at it’s finest. Literally, nothing can be predicted because every single person is different and our interactions with each other follow accordingly.
I’ve never been tested, shaped, challenged, developed, and loved more than when I became “Mom”.
So you may be asking yourself, “how can I be good at this?”
How can I be a good parent?
To be a good parent, one thing is a must: you have to be accepting.
Accept that life is more. More everything. More fun, scary, emotional, lonely, full, exciting, terrifying, heartbreaking, joyful, aggravating, peaceful, intentional, chaotic, organized, falling apart, loving….it’s just a whole lot more of it all.
Accept the changes, choices, passing of time, and all the other stuff. If you can accept what you face as a parent, you can respond with an intentional heart, and have a family rooted in purpose. Purpose to make life as good as you can, and relying on Christ for the rest.
Being a parent brings the responsibility to pour into something that (God willing) will out live your time on Earth. Your children are your legacy.
I don’t know about you, but I want my legacy to leave this world a better, more loving place. Lighting this world up from having the love of Christ to live out and share with others.
There is no science to give us a guide book or directions that will develop, teach, and grow a perfect human specimen (nope, even though some science would disagree). Each person is uniquely made in their mother’s womb, and what will help every one by and large the most, is to feel accepted and loved.
And how do you do that?
Use your experiences (good AND bad) to impart wisdom to your growing little ones, shower them with affection, and correct them when they do wrong. Use explanation as a CRITICAL tool in correcting less than stellar behavior. They can understand more than you think at a really small age.
That’s it. That’s in a nutshell what it takes.
Oh yeah, and PATIENCE!! For the love of the Lord, PATIENCE PEOPLE! But accepting (all the things) will help with that in a major way.
Ultimately, it’s a whole lot of better-ness (<< yes, I made that up) being a parent, and I promise >> YOU CAN ROCK IT!
Leave your parenting words of wisdom in the comments below! Sharing is caring!
If you’re parents-to-be, here is a great post on what to pack for the hospital!