Two Lists to Help You as You Guide Little Ones

I love to read.  I’ve learned a lot over the years from reading.   If you read and are a parent, you’ve probably read numerous parenting books.  I’ve read quite a few over the last decade.  Some were good but I’ve forgotten over time.  Other’s were burned forever into my brain!  Some I’ve read bits and pieces from – taking what I needed for the season.  You know how it is; time is limited.  You can’t read everything.  So I thought I would help you out a bit and list a few of my favs that I’ve kept handy, to reread, for future reference:

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Here they are in no particular order:

Anything by Tim Kimmel:  I’ve heard him speak and read his books.  I love how he highlights what’s really important in raising kids!  Surprisingly they are not spelled S-U-C-C-E-S-S or M-O-N-E-Y.  How much money your child will earn or what awards he/she will win in the long run is not the most important thing.  Truth.

Anything by Kevin Leman: He speaks frankly.  I’ve said it over and over – I wish the man lived in my house so I could ask him the countless questions I have!

Be the Parent by Kendra Smiley.  The title says it all.

Who Made the Moon? by Sigmund Brouwer.  Science and faith.  For those of you who have kids who question you about creation vs. science.  I haven’t read all the way through this one yet but it certainly gives some food for thought.  The little I have read has made me rethink how I answer those questions from my boys.

The Whole-Brain Child by Daniel J. Siegel & Tina Payne Bryson.  My sister-in-law recommended this book.  It’s very readable, not too clinical.  Helps you understand how we are wired and act the way we do.  I had to put it aside because I was reading something similar and didn’t want to confuse them, but I really like what I’ve read so far.  It’s one I’m going to go back to.

She’s Gonna Blow by Julie Barnhill.  This book saved my life.  It was the catalyst that started me on the long road to healing and wholeness.  It’s not normal to be angry all the time! If someone tells you it is, that’s a lie.  Just saying….

Motherhood: The Guilt that Keeps on Giving by Julie Barnhill.  We all feel guilty for something that we have done as mothers, father, teachers…

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On that note, we all suffer from guilt.  We aren’t perfect.  That’s been a really hard lesson for me to accept.  I told myself over and over this lie: If I’m not perfect, I will screw up my kids.  It actually made my behaviour worse.

I know all about guilt.  There are some pictures from when my guys were little that I can hardly look at without crying.  I know how dark and desperate I felt at that time.  I can’t go back but I can move forward into a whole and healthy life.  Guilt is a wasted emotion.  True remorse brings change, guilt only brings shame.  In Motherhood: The Guilt that Keeps on Giving, Barnhill asks you to create a list of things you’ve done right as a mom.  That’s what I’m going to do!

Go ahead and create your own.  You may surprise yourself.  You’ve probably done more right than you give yourself credit for.  Remember that your list won’t be the same as mine because we all are unique and so are our kids.  There is no judgement here.AT.ALL.

Here are five things I’ve done right over the years.  I hope they inspire you to write your own list.  Give yourself that gift.

1.  Establishing an early bedtime routine and sticking to it!  Thank you Mom for instilling that in me in the early days of motherhood.  It has saved me again and again.  Babysitters will thank you for it!

2. Sitting on the floor and teaching my kids how to play.

3. Saying I’m sorry when I made a mistake.  Some days this was multiple times.

4. Letting them be boys.  That means stomping in puddles, climbing high into trees, getting muddy, playing with toy weapons.  (Remember NO JUDGEMENT)  Letting them learn to be a hero because it is written into their DNA.

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5.  Going to get help for myself when I needed it.  It is worth the money, time and other sacrifices to be healthy – physically, mentally and spiritually- for myself, my husband and my children.   There is NO SHAME.

Happy Mother’s Day

Jen

What things have you done right as a mom, grandparent, aunt or teacher?  Care to share any resources that were invaluable to you?  I’d love to hear about them!

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