Thursday, April 18, 2013

Parenting Lessons Learned

This is  Mc H. I am only a couple of years into this parenting teens gig. I learn something new about myself or my children every day.  Hubby and I like to call it leapfrog parenting. They jump ahead and then we jump to catch-up. Recently I was thinking about a list I made and wanted to resurrect it maybe add some stuff I have learned recently.

Parenting and the lessons learned (so far)

1.       I have been given stewardship of another human being (or 3 in my case).  Raise them to release them well. Like an arrow, I can do all the prep I want but when it is time, the release is the most important.


2.       Sleep is awesome. I didn’t sleep for the first 10 years, so I treasure it now.


3.       Be flexible.  You can plan all you want. Try not to freak when all your plans change.


 4.       Underwear gets dirty, shirts get dirty, jeans NEVER get dirty.  We will do enough laundry in life, give yourself a pants break.


 5.       Learn to cook.  I know, weird parenting advice, but seriously learning to cook will help you in every stage of child rearing.  From baby food to where I am right now teaching my teen how to menu plan and cook healthy.


 6.       Say you’re sorry…and mean it. To your children when you are wrong, and to your spouse. And faking it makes you look like an ass.  Your children can see right through that.


 7.       If you fight in front of your children with your spouse, then make-up in front of them as well.  It just isn’t realistic that you will never fight in front of your kids.  So when you do, make up in front of them.  Let them learn how to resolve conflict.


 8.       Potty training is from the devil. Don’t do it. They will figure it out.  Go to any football stadium 99% of them are potty trained.  Don’t kill yourself over this.


 9.   Sing and dance often.  I sang my kids to sleep. I sang sitting on the bathroom floor during potty training. I sang their alphabet, grammar and reading rules.  I sing and dance now just to embarrass them show them I am a person too. 

 10.   An old pastor taught us this rule: Never enter into a battle of wills with your children.  When you do, win at all costs.

 11.   A healthy marriage is the best thing you can do for your kids.  Work on it.  Date your spouse, remember your kids will move away, but you have a lifetime with your husband/wife.  Have sex. I’m not being crude, intimacy is important. 

 12.   Love unconditionally.  Your children are people. They are real human beings who have their own thoughts, loves, passions, dislikes and they might not be yours.  But you love them no matter what.

 13. Teens need to talk. Give them space and time. You have to listen to the twenty minutes of mind numbing nothing to get too how they are really feeling.

 14.  Expectations are okay to have.  I expect my children to act a certain way, behave with kindness, have manners. I can enforce those expectations. It doesn’t make me a terrible parent it makes me a good one.

 15.  Puppy love is still love to the puppy. This is a new one for me and I am sure I will keep learning it over and over. You might not see life altering heartbreak, but to your children it is. Teach them love, loss and healing, Even puppy love loss.

 That is all the parenting wisdom I have.  I screw these up all time. Then I go back and remember and try harder, love more, jump again.

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