I don’t mean to mislead you by my title today. Raising a family doesn’t mean you’re going to be fighting a never-ending battle with your offspring. It does mean you will be spending your time much differently than you did before they arrived on the scene. Being a parent in itself deserves a Badge of Courage, but when you are with them 24/7 you have gone way above the call of duty. When you add an outside job to this one, you deserve more than a medal. Each day begins with a barrage of shrapnel in your path. Toys are scattered everywhere. Have you ever stepped on a Lego with your bare feet? Your house will never be posted on Pinterest – you thrive on caffeinated beverages – your work schedule never ends, even when you manage to get in 40 winks – I mean that literally!
We cry with them when they face jabs from the neighborhood bully. We become go into Mama
Bear mode with anyone who does the jabbing. We feel like drill sergeants when we ask them to clean their rooms. We cheer them on in all their endeavors. We make sure they’re safe, healthy, smart, happy, encouraged, well adjusted, God loving and more. We suffer through their bruises and illnesses. We endeavor to help them make good choices but allow them to decide for themselves.
One day you’re praising them for their art work and the next day they’re spray painting the dog. One day you’re proud of their interest in nature and next day they come home with a three foot snake. There are times you’re amazed at their speaking skills and then you’re shocked when words come out of their mouths that you didn’t think they knew.
Some days hold great success, others seem like a total bust, but you’re building the future through them. Teaching them values- telling them about integrity, honesty, loving someone despite their faults, helping them become the kind of leaders that have been lacking in our country for a long time.
There will be days when you wonder why you ever became a parent – especially when you’re peeling oatmeal off the walls or trying to get permanent marker drawings out of the carpeting – but it is so worth the battles and skirmishes of childhood. It is through them that the victory so sweet. Remember they are a gift from God and on loan to us to educate, inspire, encourage and love. The short time we have available to us is never enough and the parenting never ends until we go to heaven.