As I sit alone in Starbucks with a macchiato, it’s quiet. It’s unfamiliar and honestly a bit uncomfortable. I’m used to noise, a lot of it, and it has become a part of me. I used to enjoy the quiet but it’s funny that sitting in a quiet room now has me feeling incomplete. I have boys, two of them, and before I became a mom, I assumed parenting was easy. I’m a loving responsible, attentive, intelligent, caring, active, fun person. What more could I need to be a successful parent? In fact, I even had visions of my soon-to-be family and I taking walks together, holding hands with “The Hills are Alive” by Julie Andrews playing as our family theme song. My future children would always listen to me. They certainly would never run up and down the aisles of a grocery store like those other children. Not my kids. I assumed as a parent I would teach them between right and wrong and immediately they will get it. They wouldn’t defy me, because well, I’m their mom and I give them plenty of love and affection. Why wouldn’t they listen to me? Sounds great, right? As you can imagine, once I became a mom, I’ve learned it’s not quite as easy at that. Looking back, I realize that I really had a skewed view on parenting and obviously a lot to learn. Although being intelligent, responsible and loving are great attributes to have, they don’t exactly translate into easy parenting. It has more to do with kids, their needs, and their priorities, which are much different than ours. If we don’t understand that, we can really get frustrated and stressed, and that is not helpful.
I’m not sure about you but no one has ever pulled me aside to tell me exactly how challenging parenting can be. Add a house full of busy boys and you really have your work cut out for you. If you’re more of a quiet reserved gentle mom like me, all of this roughness, boy noise, and WWF behavior may make you want to crawl into a hole, or cry. (Trust me, there have been days.) It is at this point that I came to accept the fact that our family theme song isn’t quite Julie Andrews but rather Guns N’ Roses’ “Welcome to the Jungle” for anyone who chooses to enter our house of crazy.
Parenting is a learning process. It’s not something we “get” right away. Particularly because each child is so different. We have to learn our children and what works best for them.
I’m writing this blog to share my personal experiences and what has worked for me in hopes that you will find some helpful hints when raising your own children.