Parenting – You’re Doing it Right

Since the day that Tevye was born, I’ve questioned my parenting style, skills, and technique(if that’s what you call spending an inordinate amount of time trying to get your kids to poop in the proper place, eat their supper, and be a good person). I’m not always certain that I’m doing a great job. As a matter of fact, on numerous occasions I’ve gone to bed at night and been kept awake for multiple hours knowing, just KNOWING that I’ve irreversibly screwed up my children through events of the day.

What if I was too hard on Saarah, trying to get her to eat her supper? If she doesn’t eat, she’ll get sick! But what if she develops an eating disorder because of how I acted?

The kids spent more time in front of screen than they should’ve. What if they develop lazy, sedentary lifestyles?

I forgot to get the kids to practice reading their books for school! What if they don’t learn to read as fast as they should?

Tevye wanted to play hockey after school, but I was busy. What if he has issues of neglect when he’s older?

I’m sure that these same questions go through the head of most parents, and who could blame us? All the things you read, telling you how to be a great parent, and making you feel bad if you don’t give your child the idealistic life portrayed in those articles.

While it’s easy to get focused on these feelings of parental-inadequacy, I try to do the best I can. I’ve been attempting to focus on the small victories.

Are they good people?

Are they healthy?

Are they respectful?

Are they trying their best at school?

If I can answer in the affirmative to these, then I figure I’m doing a decent job. Once I’ve gotten past that point, I can count all the little, silly things as a bonus.

For instance, the kids went shopping with their Mama yesterday, and we needed new bandaids(somebody can’t seem to NOT cut his fingers when he’s making supper. Seriously, folks, be careful with knives. They’re sharp, and slice through fingers like anything). Fully anticipating a certain daughter of mine to pick princess-themed blood-stoppers, I was surprised and delighted to see that she’d picked a box with Kermit on one side, and Beaker on the other! That’s my girl.

I also count the fact that Tevye can recite all the words to the theme song from “The Beverly Hillbillies” as a substantial win. There’s a product for repairing roofs at work called “Black Gold” and the first time Tevye saw it, he immediately followed it up with “Texas Tea”.

My mother always taught me “pick your battles”, and perhaps I’m still trying to learn that lesson.

Wait, what if “learning to pick my battles” isn’t a battle that I’ve picked enough?! AAARRGGHH!



9 Responses to “Parenting – You’re Doing it Right”
  1. maryanita1 says:

    que lugar maravilhoso,crianças brincam livremente,realmente a liberdade não tem preço.

  2. jcw0623 says:

    Well done. I fully sympathize, and my child hasn’t even arrived yet. I’m constantly thinking about the type of father I will be, and I have those thoughts of doubt. Everyone who cares wants to be the best parent in the world, but sometimes I feel we set our expectations unreasonably high. However, I feel that my worrying and contemplating fatherhood only means I care, which I’m okay with.

  3. billiamholt says:

    “up from the ground came a bubblin crude….”Love the small victory list. perfect.

  4. sothislife says:

    You are doing the right thing. “And the first thing you know old Jed’s a millionaire…”

  5. chrisitne says:

    If you have doubts about your parenting just look at the wonderful children you have. They are polite, respectful children. Full of life and energy, fun and love. You and Nicole have done a great job with your children, no doubt about it.

  6. It’s so easy to get bogged down in negativity so way to stay focused on what is truly important.

  7. egm081109 says:

    I dunno about you, but I wanted to throw a party the day my son stopped pooping in his pants and made it to the toilet. That right there is GOOD parenting! (As a former Pre-K teacher, I can only re-enforce this… *sigh*)

    Loved the post. It’s so true! If we aren’t telling ourselves that we’re failing, someone else is. A grandparent, an in-law, some random stranger. But you’re right: if those big questions are answered in the positive, we’re doing well as parents. Now… to not feel guilty that my kid is watching his 4th Wild Kratts of the day….

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