Parenting: The scariest (and most wonderful) role
I’ve decided that there is no scarier role, or more wonderful, of course, than that of being a parent. The idea that we are the most important role model in our children’s lives can be daunting. There was no manual, no course in school to give us insight and direction as we signed on for this complicated occupation.
This comic strip really validated just how important “what we do” in addition to “what we say” impacts our children. Even when we think they are not watching, not listening, they really are. I was reminded of this last week when my 23-year-old daughter called me from California to talk about a conversation she had with her employer. They were talking about a moral decision that my daughter had made at work with a client, and her boss was singing her praises as to how she had handled the situation. My daughter told her that, “My mom always taught me that….” Though I don’t recall what the message was that I had given my daughter as the list is 23 years long, it was one of those “aha” moments for me to realize I had taught her something good, and better yet, she had listened!
No doubt there are many lessons in our daughters’ repertoires that they will, a) never remember or b) choose not remember. The fore mentioned was an example of messages gone right, but I am well aware of the numerous ones that certainly could’ve used better judgment on our part. I remember raising my voice to our girls while telling them that it was not OK to raise theirs … really?
Or how about that message about detaching from our beloved technology to be present and available while we are together, as my cell phone is tucked in closely by my side? Wow.
We certainly are going to make many mistakes as we take on this most precious role of raising our children and the learning curve is never ending. It is good for our children to see that we too don’t always do things perfectly, for those mistakes are amongst the greatest teaching moments.
Here’s to a new year, new beginnings, new mistakes and some critical positive role modeling!