I mentioned last week how it’s been hard, this 3rd year of my daughter’s life. We’ve had lots of downs, many ups, and a lot of tears. I’ve been praying a lot for wisdom to know how best to love my daughter, show her God’s love, and show her the way HE would have her to live her life. It’s been hard. I thought I might share some of the things we’ve been trying with mostly successful out-comes. I am, by NO means, an expert–just a mom trying to raise children who love and serve the Lord.
1. No yelling–We all know yelling really does nothing but make ourselves feel better, even if temporarily, and our children scared and/or angry. I’ve been doing reading about strong-willed children–because we have one!–and one thing that is a reigning theme is to NOT yell at your child. This is also in scripture. “A soft answers turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger.” I have seen this time and time again. The more I yell, get angry and throw my own fit the more fired up and angry Cora gets. It’s just not worth it, really. Yes, I fail in this lots. But! I am desperately trying to do better because I believe it’s vital to my children’s view of me and ultimately God. I see how my soft answers turn away her wrath. I see how my harsh (yelling) words stir up her anger. For me, I have been practicing taking a deep breath (sometimes closing my eyes and taking a FEW deep breaths) before continuing on.
2. Quality time–I know this should really be a no-brainer, but, well, this one is somehow hard for me. Not because I don’t want to spend time with Cora, but I can very easily get caught up in the task at hand–that I think is so important–and forget to spend time with just Cora, or Ben, or both of them together. Ben is still napping in the morning (YEAH!) so that means for about 1 1/2 to 2 hours Cora and I can do stuff by ourselves that would be more challenging with Ben. I have been making a point to include her in house work (doing 1 or 2 small things, not a whole bunch), and then we color, do play dough, bake something, read, or just waller on the floor tickling and giggling with each other! It’s been fun and I’ve noticed a huge difference in her. I’ve noticed it’s helped her to see she’s loved and is fun to be around. It seems to be helping her whole attitude as well.
3. Prayer–Above all else, I have been praying lots and lots and lots. I know, again, should be a no-brainer, but I have found it is very easy to get so engrossed in the daily ins and outs of my day that I can forget to pray specifically for my children and pray for them in specific ways. I have been doing my best to, each day, lift them each up individually to the Lord and ask for wisdom to know how best to love and parent them that day.
Again, I’m no expert. This is all trial and error, live and learn. What are things you find to be helpful with your kids? How have you revamped your parenting? I’d love to hear your ideas or things that have, or haven’t, worked!