Here's one I've been working on for the past few days... it's been busy at home!
The journaling reads:
Note to self: Nothing in this life compares to the lessons learned when becoming a parent. When I first became one, I knew I would be faced with challenges, but I never imagined to what extent. I’ve learned that a parent starts off pretty easy when starting to instill beliefs. In the earlier stages, I teach right from wrong, God and Jesus helps people, pick up, never hit, and to be polite amongst a few. But as they grow older, they start to ask more questions that require more of an explanation. It’s a bit more difficult, but still doable. But by the time they start hitting their teens, they revert to their early years and continuously ask why. And their questions follow more of their own thoughts and doubts and challenge me to answer in detail why II have my beliefs, morals, values and ethics. These challenges makes me dig deep to ensure that my core values reflect who I truly am or if I need to adjust some of my opinions based on a new perspective. I have always believed that not doing what you know is wrong is the right thing. But as these continue to be brought up and challenged, the more I wonder how I am doing as a parent. Should I be the nice mom, the friend, or the mean mom? Is there somewhere in between while they’re teens? When a kid is upset with a consequence for a behavior I didn’t agree with, am I being too harsh or not harsh enough? Do I talk to them enough about what I think is the right thing to do when faced with typical teen issues? Do I talk to them too much? How do I know if they’re keeping things from me? At what length should I go to find out? Do I have the same rules for all the kids, or bend them based on each child? Should I give in sometimes to things I know isn’t in their best interest? Am I letting them get their feet wet on the road to independence too soon? Too late? How much should I trust them and when? Do I trust too easily or not enough? How do I know they’re making the right decisions? How do I handle it when I know one of them made the wrong decision but hasn’t seen the consequence yet? I’ve always believed that a child’s brain is like a train track and their thoughts are like the train. The more connections one makes, the more tracks are built, and the more the train can travel. Have I taught my children enough so their tracks are built on a solid foundation? These are questions I’ve found myself searching for answers in the past few years. While I’ve been able to answer some of these questions at times, I’ve learned that each child is different so I can expect to need to change my answers depending on the child. Is this fair? Maybe not, but who said life is fair?