I miss the good ole days. You know the days when you were exhausted from chasing toddlers. Being sleep deprived because you were up all hours of the night feeding babies. The days of finding hot wheels cars in the toilet and kitchen utensils in the sandbox. The days of finding your toddler hiding in a kitchen cabinet eating out of the cereal box or on the counter playing in the dog food. Those days when you didn't have a moment to think a complete thought without a child needing something. If you're in the middle of those days right now, you're probably thinking, "She's crazy. I need sleep and privacy and maybe a shower." Before you think I've completely lost my mind, let me explain.
Two of my 3 toddlers are now teenagers, one is a tween and the baby is now 9.....and really I'm thinking 9 is the best age!! He's old enough to do most things for himself but not too old to still give me giant hugs. Plus he still thinks I'm the best mom in the world when I let him have a brownie for breakfast!! It's the older ages that are exhausting me in a whole new way.
Babies & toddlers are exhausting physically for the most part. However, I'm finding that teens & tweens are emotionally & spiritually exhausting. Their issues are much deeper, their emotions are much stronger and their choices have bigger impacts. Training them requires me to constantly be praying for wisdom and guidance. It requires me to be in God's Word listening for His instructions on what choices I need to make as a parent. I need God's strength to make the hard choices that don't make my teen happy. I need God's gentleness and kindness to respond to the bad attitudes displayed by unhappy teens. I need God's assurance that when I take time to train them up in His way that they won't depart from it when they have the freedom to do things their own way. I need God's patience to see parenting as a journey and not a sprint. I have to understand God's uncondtional love for me so that I can then show that kind of love to my kids when they aren't being so lovable. In order for me to know God, I must be diligent in studying His Word and applying it in my own life.
Dr. Dobson was so very right when he said "Parenting is not for cowards". Some of the worst decisions I've made as a parent were to ignore issues or let things slide because I wanted to make things easier on my children or myself. In that moment, I chose not to take the time to train and teach. I chose not to get to the root of the issue....the heart. I can use rules to change the outward behavior but only God's Word & love can change their hearts. And I need to be ready at all times in all circumstances to look past the behavior and see their heart.
This journey of parenting teenagers is showing me everyday just how much I need to be on my knees before God seeking Him. And one day when my kids ae grown , maybe this season will be the "good ole days" that I miss.
I am a Christian, a wife, a mom, a VBS crafter, a coupon clipper, a thrift store shopper, a football fan, a cook, a student of the Bible and an avid reader.