The title may have captured your attention and that is what I intended. But really this isn’t a post to rant about either of my kids being out of control or yours for that matter. This instead is one of my rare times that I am getting on my soap box. I am not one to make a big deal about what is going on in my mind. I may be very opinionated but will rarely tell you what I am thinking unless you ask. I don’t like conflict. But there has been something that has been eating away at me for a couple of months and I need to get it off my chest. And hey, it’s my blog, I should be able to get up on my soap box occasionally if I want to . Why is it that many (or most) women, when they become mothers (in some cases as soon as they get pregnant) become very narrow minded on what is the best way to raise children. All of a sudden it becomes a very heated debate and words can be said that are very hurtful and downright disrespecting! Why is it that mothers, of all people, will be the first to tell other mothers what’s on their mind, even if the “advice” is unsolicited.
Becoming a mother is the most empowering, yet humbling experience a woman can go through, in my opinion! Most of us, give birth, realize we have this beautiful miracle to raise and love and we freak out a little because that is a very large burden to carry! We begin to nurture this child in the very best way we know how. Many moms, especially in my generation, read book after book on all the variety of methods, research, theories in hopes to find as much info as possible to aid in this amazing responsibility. And many times they find a method that is best for them and miss out on the bonding time with their child.
This, in turn, becomes the root of the issue. You find, what you believe, best fits with you and your child and all of a sudden that is the ONLY RIGHT WAY for every mother and child. Hey, I will admit that I did this. I watched my friends who were having babies before me and thought to myself “I am definitely not going to do that”, or “my toddler is NEVER going to act that way”.
But didn’t God make us all unique individuals, who have very unique children and very unique needs? IS it right to assume what is best for my kid is best for your kid. Even within my own family structure, is it right for me to assume that what is best for Evan is best for Carter? What worked with Evan should work with Carter? What Evan’s interests should automatically be Carter’s interests?
Moms, of all people, need to be the most understanding to other moms. After all, can’t we empathize the most with other moms when it comes to the difficult decisions we have to make for our children on a daily basis. Don’t we know how we agonized over how we were going to handle illnesses, vaccines, nursing, tantrums, education, child care, schedules, weaning - of course these only scratch the surface of issues we have to worry about!
And all of the sudden, we work out a plan on how to handle all of the previous stated stresses and BOOM - we become very judgmental on all other approaches.
Why can’t we, as moms, be more understanding? Why can’t we love each other unconditionally and love each other’s kids unconditionally? Why can’t we look past the minor differences and focus on the positives? Why can’t we become open-minded? Why can’t we respect each other decisions, whether we agree or not?
I have been hurt recently and have known a couple of my friends who have been hurt, by people close to us who feel it necessary to tell us, even when we didn’t ask for it, their opinions of our children. It is amazing how one person can say one thing about your child that is completely out-of-line, but that one thing tears away at you and hurts in a way that is unimaginable.
Just for the record, my children ARE NOT perfect, but they ARE who God made them to be. Does Evan have toddler meltdowns occasionally? Yes. Can Evan scream at such an ear-piercing level that it shatters your ear drums? Yes. Is Carter in MAJOR Separation Anxiety mode? YES. Does Carter yell and carry on when he doesn't get his way? Yes. I am not a perfect mother, but I do STRIVE to be the mother that God wants me to be.
My children are “fearfully and wonderfully made (Psalm 139:14).” They are spunky and loud. They LOVE life to its’ fullest. They love to laugh and scream and jump and run!
Evan is empathetic and caring. He is the first to help another child who is crying. He is compassionate and loving. He is serious, introspective and takes things personally. He knows how to “push my buttons”, but he also is secure in my love to know that my arms are always open. He says “excuse me”, “please”, “thank you” and even “bless you, mommy” when I sneeze. He is the first to run over and kiss my boo-boos when I am sad. He is sensitive, yet tough. He is joyful and sings loudly so the “rocks don’t cry out (Luke 19:37-40)”. He is LOUD yet reserved. He is respectful to each and every adult he meets, even if he isn’t with me ALL the time. Sunday school teachers adore him and mention each time I pick him up what a joy he is to have in their classes. He is ALL boy!!
Carter is bubbly and loving. He loves to take chances because he is secure that he will always be caught. He tells me complete stories in his own little language. He loves the sound an airplane makes and hears every single one that flies over. He is demanding! He knows what he wants and goes after it! He sleeps beautifully! He has eyes that pierce your soul and a giggle that is contagious! He smiles with his WHOLE body. He repeats EVERYTHING you say, so you need to be on your toes at all times. He hides under the bed when I look for him and splashes in the dog’s water bowl if I leave him alone in the kitchen.
If this is what an “out of control child” is then that is what I want my children to be!! We mom’s need to stick together and look past the differences, get over the guilt, get past the competition and enjoy our kids to the fullest, embrace the challenges and find joy in them, and love each other!! So, I want to hear about how you are blessed. Shout it from the roof tops and leave me a comment explaining what is unique and special about your kids!! Brag and be proud. Let’s love on each other a little bit and love on our kids even more!!