I’ll be honest with you. It’s been one of those days. The ones where you’re torn at the seams, barely hanging on by a thread. Threatening to fall apart completely if you have to bear the weight of one more seemingly impossible demand.
Being a parent is one tough gig. It’s been said that it’s the hardest job in the world, albeit the one with the greatest rewards.
So many times though, I feel like an absolute failure. Like I don’t have the first clue what I’m doing here. And if I ever feel like I’m getting a grasp on the current season we’re in, rest assured that a new storm is about to blow through.
So what do I do? I search in vain for answers to this week’s problems. Stacks of parenting books. Open browser tabs full of articles and blog posts. Text messages to friends who might have muddled through this particular brand of crazy before.
I want so badly to be a better parent.
It has to be me, right? If I were a better mom, my kids would be better behaved. Right?
Becoming a parent has given me a new perspective when it comes to my relationship with my Heavenly Father. Having a child of my own is the closest I’ve come to experiencing unconditional love. And when I’m expecting too much from my imperfect children, he gently reminds me that I’m not perfect either.
How many times have I chided my daughter for not listening to me and following directions? How many times have I chosen to go my own way rather than obeying the Holy Spirit’s promptings?
How often have I reminded her (once again) to stop interrupting others’ conversations? How many times have I abruptly ended my prayer time to check a text or move onto something else entirely?
How many more grocery store tantrums can one mother endure? How many times have I shaken my fists at the Lord when things didn’t go my way?
I’m selfish. I’m impatient. I’m needy. I’m broken. I’m a sinner, just like them.
And he disciplines me when I need it, because he only wants what’s best for me. Just like I only want what’s best for my children.
I’m so incredibly grateful that the Lord has entrusted me with the huge task of raising these tiny humans. Only six years in, I still have a ways to travel on this journey called motherhood.
The fact of the matter is that I will never have perfect kids – because I will never be a perfect parent.
But I am oh, so thankful that my Heavenly Father models perfection for me. Through his unfailing grace and forgiveness of my own shortcomings, I can learn to extend the same to my own sweet children.
It’s no longer my prayer to become the “perfect parent,” but that my children will come to know the One who is.