We look at our children and feel that overwhelming love, we are so proud of them as they take their first steps, speak that first word, make their first friend, figure that problem out, run that race, sing that song, score that goal, get that certificate…
Then there are the sleepless nights, the crying, the meltdowns, the stroppiness, the refusal, the mess, the fuss, the difficult times – it’s not all plain sailing, it’s a learning process.
As a first time parent I was often anxious, I compared myself to other mums too often, compared my child to his peers … “Her child doesn’t cry every time she drops him off.” “That child doesn’t bite.” – and the shameful “Her party bags were better than mine.”
But it eased over time. I often, over many years as my children grew, developed and changed, wondered if I’d screwed up, how I’d screwed up and what I’d screwed up. It’s only natural – we want to be the best we can and do the best we can do for our children. Parenting carries awesome responsibility and is probably the most important job you’ll ever do in your life (unless you’re a brain surgeon).
Of course, I look at my grown up kids now and am just so grateful so see them happy, healthy and achieving. It’s all we can hope for isn’t it?
It’s not always easy, you won’t always be perfect, you won’t always do the right thing. But if you parent from a place of care, of love, of positivity – don’t sweat the small stuff.