When I first became a mom, like many newbie parents, I thought I had to do it all. That if I wasn’t at the forefront of every parenting decision made, well then, things wouldn’t be done correctly.
I know, it’s hard to believe that I was ever a control freak or a perfectionist.
(To put things in context, though, that was also during the life stage when I organized my linen closet by color, size, and style — and made sure everything was folded perfectly and that all folds were facing the same direction.)
Clearly those days are long gone, and I had WAY too much time on my hands.
Yes, parenting has fully changed my perspective on a lot of things.
You see, one day I had an epiphany: I married a man who was fully capable of making parenting decisions on behalf of our kids. I had a partner in the parenting process. (In reflection, however, he probably wishes I’d go back to those days of me doing a little more and him doing a little less!)
I was reminded of this tonight. As I type, I’m supposed to be at church volunteering in our Wednesday night children’s ministry. But, alas, I’m at home recouping from a doctor’s appointment and catching up on work. So, my gracious husband is filling in for me—as one of the teachers in the Pre-K through 2nd grade class. That’s love, folks.
Five years ago, by my accord, this wouldn’t have happened. But little by little I learned to stop being a gatekeeper and start embracing help from others. Now I frequently quote the “It takes a village” mantra as I humbly recognize all that others can offer my kids (and me!). With the help of grandparents, extended family, church family, teachers, school parents, colleagues, and most of all, my husband, together we make things work. And my kiddos are loved by many.
Thought for today: Embrace your village. And if you don’t have one, start networking. Get to know the other parents in your kid’s class; lean on family or community friends. And unless you have a valid reason not to, trust your spouse or co-parent to be a great parent too. Life’s too hard to go at parenthood alone.
Practicing What I Preach: I have to admit, I’ve become increasingly bad at paying attention to detail. A life lesson in slowing down. But whether I overlook a detail or misread the fine print… thankfully my village keeps me going.