Ross Mountney took the words right out of my mouth on this subject.
I remember writing this same thing in a parenting group on Facebook years ago. So, I’m glad that I came across her post . I am pasting it here for you to read and will add a comment at the end.
Here’s something many people just don’t understand; the most valuable thing that you will ever do is parent your children.
Because it’s not just your children who are affected, or your own family life. It’s about something much bigger than that. And in order to understand that you have to step back and look at the bigger picture.
Think about ripples. When you chuck a stone in water the stone doesn’t only affect the place where it hits the surface, its impact sends ripples out through the whole pool. Right to the edges even, right to places it was nowhere near and never touched.
Your parenting is like that. Because your children are affected by your parenting more than they are affected by anything else in their lives. And that parenting, and the way your children are, will be sending ripples out through society just like the pool.
Your children affect the children they meet, the children at school, the communities they join, the work they do as they grow, the families of their own that they may one day create. And it will not only be their own little communities they affect, for as those communities interact they affect others beyond their own ripples in their own pool and affect societies to come. And your children do not only affect this planet as it is now, their actions affect the future of the planet too.
These small babies of yours, these toddlers, tweenagers and teens, and the way in which you are bringing them up actually affects everybody. That’s how the bigger picture looks. And that’s why the most valuable thing that you ever do is to parent your children.
That’s why parenting is so, SO important.
It’s also why it is so important that we value it. That we value it enough to give it our time, thought and attention, we value it enough to prioritise our parenting duties over and above other things for a while, value it enough to make sure we do it well.
Of course, the next big question is; how do we do it well?
To do anything well, whatever it is, requires; focus, energy, being engaged, commitment, putting ourselves out, thought.
It also involves; research, consideration, decision making, sacrifice of other things we were formerly engaged in, changes.
Changes to; ourselves, the way we behave, the way we think, our way of living.
The biggest requirement is respect:
Respecting our parenting enough to devote energy and commitment to it, be responsible about it.
Respecting ourselves enough to do this new job to the best of our abilities, smarten up our act a bit, think through our morals, practices, behaviours, habits and language.
Respecting our children enough to value time spent with them, listening to them, being involved with their doings, guiding, educating them (and that happens as much through our interaction with them as anything else), cherishing them and nurturing them. Caring.
Now this may all sound too much of a demand on our time and energy and too much for us to aspire to or achieve. But it isn’t. For it is so, so simple.
It is simply achievable by just being a good, caring person. A good caring person who is there.
Being a good caring person you will pass that goodness and care onto your child. They will understand what goodness and care is all about. Then they will in turn send ripples of goodness and care out into the world, helping make it a good place to be. And that’s simply because of your parenting.
That’s the effect your parenting has. It has an effect far beyond you and your children. It has an effect throughout the world. That’s why it’s so important.
It is the most valuable thing that you could ever do.
More About Ross
I invite you to pop over to Ross Mountney’s Notebook and read about parenting, home educating and thoughtful living. She is also a published author with a very readable style. It’s like listening to a wise and helpful friend.
She also has two fun children’s books about a little boy named Harry, illustrated by a home educated young man.
How Do I Become The Best Parent I Can Be?
I know some lovely people will just have to set the intention to be a respectful, nurturing parent and on the whole, their thoughts and actions reflect this intention.
However, I know there are other people (like me) who want to be like that but find themselves slipping into momentums of disrespect due to the type of childhood they endured.
So I wanted to add here some resources that have helped me to become the parent I really wanted to be.
EFT tapping has played a large part in my transformation. EFT is short for Emotional Freedom Technique and does just that create emotional freedom so that we are not reacting to the buttons that out children press but from our authentic and loving self who emerges when the emotional pain of our past is transcended.
Practical Help on How to Parent Peacefully
It’s good to read books and articles, so we know what we are aiming for, but it’s also great to have our specific questions answered. I have found The Way of the Peaceful Parent Q&A Group on Facebook to have wise advice.
There are loads of other resources to help us evolve as better parents. What have you found to be helpful?
Please let us know in the comments below.