This is a contributor piece I wrote for Portland Mom's Blog. Read the full article HERE
I vividly remember the conversation. My friend and I were standing in my kitchen, joking about how tempted we were to make our six-year-old daughters drink out of sippy cups. Not because they didn’t know how to drink from a regular cup, but because it ensured no mess to clean up. This conversation ensued just after my three-year-old poured milk from the carton into his cereal bowl, managing to get 80% of it in the bowl, and the rest on the counter. I’ve come to realize that in an attempt to control the mess and the chaos, my parenting strategies were focused on the small failures instead of celebrating numerous successes. I decided that it was time to release my grip of control and begin fostering independence in my kids.
It is Not About Me
It is uncomfortable for me to admit, but at times my parenting strategies shift based on who is watching. Truth be told, I am a recovering people-pleaser, and I am working hard not to hold such an elevated view of what others think of me. This journey to more wholeness has had a positive effect on my parenting. The narrative surrounding the mess in the kitchen and how that reflects on my worth as a mother, shifts from beating myself up for not keeping things clean and tidy, to celebrating the fact that my kids had a blast making an afternoon batch of jello. And they did it all on their own. Although their version of cleaning up has room for improvement, I am seeing how these opportunities to execute a task from beginning to end, aids in fostering independence.
Continue reading the entire article over at Portland Mom's Blog