Thursday, January 14, 2016

Parenting is Like Gardening


It's been about three and a half years now.

Three and a half years of wondering if I am the world's lousiest mother. Three and a half years of discipline and instruction, never consistent enough, done falteringly and feebly, but with as much love as any mother has to give. Three and a half years of a delightful, yet undeniably strong-willed, daughter asserting her independence.

Our oldest is 4 and a half... and all of a sudden, it seems like all of the things we have been stressing, and working through, and reminding and teaching are sort of starting to click.

I'm suddenly seeing a lot of fruit from all of our labors. It's encouraging to say in the least.

This is not to say that everything is perfect. We are still sorting out temper tantrums often, reminding, correcting, and disciplining. Because my kids will stop sinning as soon as I stop sinning {hint: not in this life}. But this beautiful and creative, severely strong-willed child is exhibiting multiple signs of blossoming maturity.

Interestingly enough, this has coincided with the two and a half year old beginning to incite his own rebellion. A much later bloomer to the terrible twos than his sister, which was nice until now :).


The delightful thing is is that this time around, because of all the progress I see in our first, I can remember that this is a difficult stage. It doesn't mean that I'm failing at motherhood. If we continue doing our best to train and plow through it, there will be a light at the end of the tunnel. Far away as the light may seem.

I still need to improve in consistency of discipline. I still need to learn the Law of Kindness when my kids are acting out and my patience is tried. I've got a long way to go in this motherhood gig, and by the grace of God I trust He will continue His good work in me, enabling me to rise to the task.

I've just got to tell you that this 4 and a half year old who comes when she's called, responds sweetly oftentimes now when I tell her no, and can answer me with the right verse or reason when I ask her why I've said something... she's giving me a lot of hope.

Hang in there, Mama who's first is still a fiery eighteen month old, a troublesome two year old, or a tyrannical three year old.

Yes, we need to lovingly teach and discipline our child to the best of our ability. If we do I can guarantee that sweeter days are coming just around the corner.

Parenting is like gardening- you plant and you water and you weed and you wait- just in this case the efforts are more constant and the wait is much longer. But eventually little green sprouts poke their heads out, flourish and grow, and you get to delight in the sweet fruits of your labors.

I think we're just experiencing the first fruits crop.


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