Parenting….one of the only jobs that require little to no experience, no handbook, and no step by step manual. A job that requires 5 sets of eyes, 10 set of arms, 6 breast (if applicable), and the ability to speak multiple languages, and by languages I mean…the language of love, the language of tough love, the language of no, the language of beat that ass if you don’t listen, the language of care and concern. Don’t ask about the pay scale because there isn’t one.
Yes, I understand in most cases parenting is a choice. I knowingly chose to parent 4 children. As a parent you often wonder if you’re doing it right. If the words you speak are heard. If the decisions you make are the best. If the life you’re living is a good blueprint for your children to follow.
I must admit, when I became pregnant with my second child I wondered how I could possibly love both children equally, I mean after all I’m only one person. And it only became more difficult the more children I had. You’re constantly in a state of spreading yourself evenly between the children trying not to create a favorite. This may sound crazy to some, but I struggled greatly. I tried to make sure the kisses were equal, the toys were even, and for the most part…the punishments were fair. Do you know how hard it is to determine the initiator of a fight you didn’t see? Mommy senses activate!
There is no such thing as 9-5 office hours! This job requires a 365/24/7 operation. No sick time and no vacation. No CESLA and no FMLA. Even the simple task of shitting becomes interrupted by pressing questions like, “Mom, what are you doing?” “Can I ask you a question?” “Can you open the door so I can show you this bump?” Earaches, stomachaches, headaches, and missed homework always surface at bedtime.
Parenting is trial and error, and parenting multiple children is like coaching track, soccer, football, and basketball simultaneously — expert of none. All require something different. All require different levels of attention and discipline.
Remember that there is no perfect parent, just like there is no perfect child. Remember to forgive. Use your own mistakes as a point of reference when they do something that makes you question everything you thought you knew. Share your successes and your failures. Release the EGO! Remember that everything is fixable, yes even that! Remember that it’s okay to take YOU time, in fact it’s essential to your survival! Remember that buying yourself something nice every now and then doesn’t equal child neglect–every parent suffers from, “I bought myself something” guilt. Remember that things will get messy and that’s okay. The house won’t always be clean and you will make mistakes.
But remember, parenting is one of the most rewarding, if not thee most rewarding jobs around. How amazing is it that God entrusted you with the life of another human being? Whether birthed from your womb or someone else’s. Don’t give up, it only gets better. Keep going, I promise it’s worth it.
“A child will make love stronger, days shorter, nights longer, bankroll smaller, home happier, clothes shabbier, the past forgotten, and the future worth living for.” ~Anonymous