Do you ever have a moment where you think to yourself, “don’t worry, the adults will be here soon to handle the situation,” and then realize that you are the adult? Or perhaps you identify with Olaf from Frozen II and think “this will all make sense when I am older,” before realizing that you are “older” and your responsibility is to try to help the children in your life make sense of things?
Nothing shakes your confidence quite like not knowing what to do in a tricky situation. As moms, we often find ourselves trying to navigate tricky situations with and for our children. And it doesn’t help that we tend to multiply and carry all of our children’s emotions. Their successes feel like our successes, but their problems also feel like our problems.
We have all heard that “a mother is only as happy as her unhappiest child,” and that is painfully accurate. We get so wrapped up in what our children say, think, feel, and do that we can lose sight of the fact that we are the parent and our responsibility is to equip them to handle life: for better or worse, come what may.
Modeling the “circle of control” for your kids is key. Draw a circle and list everything that you can control inside the circle, and list what you can’t control outside of the circle. Do what you can with what’s inside the circle, and make peace with the rest. Aim to control your actions and reactions. Help your children write out their own circle of control.
When we measure our success as parents, it’s easy to think about the big chaotic crossroad moments. Sometimes, the big moments are impossible to see past, but they aren’t the only moments impacting your family. The little things you do matter. The kind and quiet moments matter. The moments when you get it right matter. The prayers you pray and the advice you seek matter. Showing your child that you love them no matter what and that you are doing your best to set them up for their best, MATTERS! It all adds up and you are doing so much good in those moments. Little moments can have just as huge an impact as the big moments.
When you are in the middle of a challenging parenting season, remember that God saw and planned all of your child’s days before they were even born. He is doing this for a reason that might be too hard to see when you are in the middle of the season. But rest assured that God WILL use this for good.
You saw me before I was born. Every day of my life was recorded in your book. Every moment was laid out before a single day had passed. Psalm 139:16
And we know that God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose for them. Romans 8:28
Hindsight is always 20/20. Give yourself grace and know that you are getting as much right as you think you are getting wrong. As A.A. Milne, creator of Winnie the Pooh, said, “You are braver than you believe, stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think.” Choose GRIT over QUIT, all the while reassuring your child that you only want what’s best for them and that you love & like them.
Even when parenting feels out of control, know that God has EVERYTHING under control, working for GOOD because you are loved and called to His purposes. Your child was made on purpose, with purpose, and for a purpose. You were made on purpose, with purpose, and for a purpose. God will reveal that purpose in due time. Hang in there. Keep fighting the good fight and know that as long as you are praying for wisdom and discernment, you are doing better than you think you are.