Motherhood

The No Good, Temper-Tantrum, Terrible-Twos Bad Day

I don’t know about anyone else’s household, but I do know that my household has to have seen at least 1000+ temper-tantrums over the course of my motherhood.

Slightly exaggerating?

Umm, I don’t think so.

Our most recent bout with temper-tantrum was a trip to the grocery store. All the kids were behaving in the store so I decided to let them pick one treat to put with the groceries. Each little daughter picked what she wanted and the clerk proceeded to ring up the grocery bill. After everything was rang up and paid for, my youngest daughter decided she didn’t want what she got, she wanted the same treat her sister got. At that point, the major melt-down was in the very early stages. I told her no because everything’s been bought and paid for so now she has to take what she got or she didn’t get anything.

Okay, now we are at slightly louder crying so I decide it was time to leave and we chaotically took our exit. In the car, she just broke down and cried/screamed all the way home. Once home, I put her in her room – before I lost my temper – where she proceeded to scream. This went on for about 10-15 minutes.

I wasn’t giving in. I’d had enough of the temper-tantrums, the complete meltdowns, and the screaming because they don’t get their way. Finally, after what seemed like ions, the screaming quieted and I went to check on her. When I walked in the door,  with the sweetest, little voice she told me she’d stop screaming now, aww, be still my heart. I felt my muscles relax, and my arms opened. She came willingly and we cuddled for a minute and then I explained to her about fit-throwing. She’s almost 3, but her comprehension is still that of a small child. Everything I said probably fell upon deaf ears. But, hey, I’m hoping she will remember it.

Throughout my adult life and many, many hours reading parent books (and they are aplenty), I have learned:

There Is No RIGHT Way To Parent!

There are parenting classes available at your disposal. There are books, magazines, movies,  and internet searches galore. There’s the doctors (that don’t have children), the child psychologists, counselors, teachers, other parents and a whole host of other people who can tell you how to raise a child. However, none of these have God in their name and that’s where you will find the most help.

And nobody has the magic words that are going to make your toddler temper-tantrums, teen explosions, and girl drama (Yes! I said that!) suddenly disappear. It’s a hard thing, parenting, but it requires all of a healthy mind and heart to do. It requires patience, understanding, boundaries, compassion, listening skills, affection, commitment, confidence, discipline, love, grace and, most of all, God.

“He must be one who manages his own household well, keeping his children under control with all dignity.” 1 Timothy 3:4

I’ve been a parent for seventeen years now. Each year gets a little harder, but it’s gets a little easier, too. I have learned much along the way. Some things I’ve learned have stuck with me. Some things didn’t quite work with who I am and who my children are, so got tossed. But, we keep striving for a better day.

*disclaimer* I am just a mom trying to raise 8 beauitful, faith-filled, God-seeking individuals. My manners of raising children are in no way the only way to raise children. As I said, there is no right way to parent.

 

 

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Life in General, Motherhood, Wifehood

A Little Patience and Love

This parenting thing is hard sometimes.

Very hard.

We don’t always know the answer.

We don’t always say the right things.

We don’t always react in the correct manner.

However, my husband and I have made tremendous efforts in relying on God for parenting skills.

His wisdom.

His strength.

His mercy.

His forgiveness.

His love.

In church, we are encouraged to trust in God because, as the Bible states, “Blessed is the one who perseveres under trial because, having stood the test, that person will receive the crown of life that the Lord has promised to those who love him.” ~ James 1:12

As we know, boys look up to their fathers. They try to do most, if not all, things that their fathers do. Learning, loving, playing, living for a boy reflects what he has seen from his father. Therefore, as parents, we know we must set good examples for our children. Although, our words may hold value with our children, it’s our actions that build children into what they will be because as the old adage says, “actions speak louder than words” Therefore, we must mind our actions.

My boys are interested in all things motor, wheels, wings, speed……anything mechanical. So, the other day, one of my twins was working on his little sister’s bike (trying to replace the wheel/rubber) so she could ride it — like a good big brother would do.

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At one point, he needed the air compressor. Now, the one he has is his own because, as any mother of boys knows (the boys better know it too!) the kids better not mess with dad’s tools! To hopefully deter the boys from messing with their dads tools, they’ve started collecting their own.

So anyway, the compressor……

He retrieved the compressor from the garage and plugged it in.

However, rather than plugging it directly into a wall outlet, he plugged it into the extension cord.

Big no-no!

Oh no! It started a small fire. Without missing a beat, he handled the fire as he has been taught to do. It got no further than some sparks from the prongs on the cord. (shoo–wiping sweat from my brow).

Anyway, when their dad got home that evening and they delivered the news to him he handled it like a pro.

Rather than lose it like I was pretty sure he was going to do, he ever-so-lovingly spoke with them about the compressor drawing so much power that it needs to be directly into an outlet. Granted he doesn’t always act in such a calm manner, he did that day.

And, yes, I was darn proud of him.

And I was thankful to God because the Lord is working in him.

 

Motherhood

To My Children

As parents, most of the time, being a mother or father is what defines who we are. Our children look at us only to see mom or dad. They don’t see the laughter we know amongst other adults. They don’t see the tears that flow because of our own hurt feelings. They don’t know the child inside of us that wants to be loved, admired, accepted, considered.

They know that mom will wash some laundry, dad will cook a meal. They see dad working while mom is tending a sick sibling. They don’t see the enjoyment dad gets from truck-pulling or mom gets from reading a book uninterrupted.

They can’t know what we are like when we get a weekend away, without the responsibilities of adulthood weighing on our shoulders. They can’t understand the need/want to just sleep in that extra few minutes in the morning and be allowed to do that without getting the screams of children or cries of the babies.

They don’t know that their mom or dad used to be where they (the children) are now. Mom enjoyed hanging out with friends at a movie, bowling, etc. Dad enjoyed sitting outside, drink in hand, goofing off with his buddies. Mom liked waking up at noon on any given day. Dad enjoyed going ‘speed’ down the road on his Harley.

Oh, but as we grow, our priorities change. The life an adult actually lives may not be the perfect life that he/she envisioned, but it is a  life they chose.  For myself, I am happy with my choices. If given the chance, I wouldn’t change anything because it all got me here, with the man I love and the beautiful children I have in my midst.

But, although true, there are 16 things I’d like my children to know about me that makes me who I am as a person rather than just the mom they see, know, and love.

  1. I was a crazy, fun teenager. I like laughter and lots of it.
  2. I enjoy time to myself. The quiet. The solitude.
  3. I absolutely hate moving, but I love to travel. I love to see new places.
  4. My feelings get hurt easily. This is shown any number of ways. Through tears, mostly, but impatience and ill-temper as well.
  5. I see the beauty in everything. From the very first rays of the sun (if I’m up early enough) to a torrential rain on a summer day.
  6. I love God and pray for everyone every day.
  7. I want to live in the south again.
  8. I am extremely friendly, but get nervous around people so my friendliness is an attribute that is found once you get to know me.
  9. I hate spiders and snakes and bugs.
  10. I love the water, but actually am a little scared of it.
  11. I can’t grow long nails and I would love to be able to. When I get my nails done, I like the french manicure.
  12. I could get lost in a wet paper sack. Do Not, I repeat DO NOT, ever ask me for directions!
  13. People in my past that I wish I still ‘knew’: my best friend in high school in Georgia, Michelle and my closest friend while pregnant with my oldest child: Sarah
  14. I didn’t have any plans for my life except to one day be married and have my own family. Both have since been accomplished.
  15. I am stubborn. I don’t like to be bullied. I don’t like being bossed. In my younger years, I was a very independent soul. As I get older, the family life, the mom title, suits me.
  16. I love each and every one of my children more than they can possibly fathom.

To my children, I love you.