I posted previously about the pressures of trying to be the perfect mom. I thought I would follow up with a discussion on perfect children. Before you had children or if you don’t have children, did you every hear or think about the following phrases:
- My child will never do that (e.g., climb on chairs, run down the aisle during church, play in the toilet, etc.).
- My child will always listen to me. If I say get dressed or do your homework. It’s done.
- My teenager will never lose his/her mind.
I know for sure that some of the thoughts I listed crossed my mind at some point in my life. Parenting is hard! There is no doubt about that. Wouldn’t it be wonderful if each child came with a user manual? I know that there is no one size fits all for children. No one could have prepared me for being a parent. Additionally, I thought that after I had one, I would know exactly what to do for my next children. Uh, wrong. Each one of my children are different. I have to guide and nurture each one individually. One strategy definitely doesn’t work for all of them. I would be lying if I didn’t admit that I wished (at some point) each one of my kids was perfect. They listened to everything that I told them to do and followed all the rules.
But I am grateful that each one is not perfect. I am definitely not a perfect mother. They show me my strengths, weaknesses, and patience. Climbing on the kitchen table keeps me on my toes. My teenager who thinks his way is frequently correct is showing his independence. I can never hold his hand into manhood. My goal is to just guide him to make right choices. I have a six-year-old who I can tell to get dress ten times, and an hour later, he will still be in his pajamas. This is where patience comes in. I just try and guide him to be an independent child.
Each of my children are different, and I’m just a facilitator into raising hopefully strong, independent, morally sound, and productive adults. They teach me more about myself than I would have ever learned in school or books. I appreciate every moment that I have with my crazy children because I know this period will pass quickly. To sum it up: the perfect child who we may envision doesn’t exist, but each child is perfect in his/her own way. Cherish that.