Sometimes parenting is fun and sometimes it’s downright hard. Above all it’s a learning experience. My kids teach me something every day. Sometimes they help me see something I’ve been denying about myself. Sometimes they show me I am being too serious and need to lighten up. But today I wanted to share 5 things they taught me not to take for granted.
1. Honesty can be good
Kids are brutally honest. They have no shame or filter in speaking their minds when they feel like it and don’t care how it affects you (especially when they are young). Sometimes what they say can be a rude awakening and there’s no denying on a deep level within ourselves what they say strikes a nerve. Sometimes it’s something we don’t expect and other times it’s something we know deep inside but are denying. Sometimes it cuts to the bone and other times we can laugh it off. But the real lesson for us is to be honest. Be honest with ourselves and when appropriate be honest with those around us. Be honest (always within reason) because telling a lie or denying the truth causes much more internal damage. Most of all, be honest because it’s the right thing to do.
2. Playing rejuvenates the soul
It’s a shame as a society when our kids hit a certain age they are seen as “too old” to play with toys. When my daughter was 12 she was right on the line of still being a kid and not yet a teenager. She liked to play with toys but also wanted more grown-up responsibilities and things to do. It’s sad she felt ashamed to admit such a carefree activity to her classmates because they will make fun of her. Play is a way for kids to be creative and use problem solving skills; things they will certainly need as they get older. But why do we as a society force this on our kids? I love to watch kids play, use their problem solving skills, and be creative, even if they are “beyond playing with toys.”
Isn’t the true lesson for us to slow down and make sure we take time to “play?” Although we may not play with toys (even if some do, there’s nothing wrong with that — I love to color and watch cartoons!) it is important for us to take time to relax and do what is good for recharging our batteries.
3. Laughter is truly the best medicine
There is nothing more joyous than watching a child giggle about silly things. My son cracks up laughing because he remembers a face his sister made when she accidentally dropped her whole apple in apple dip. They laugh with gusto and they laugh until their stomachs hurt. Sometimes it’s so easy to get wrapped up in life and forget to just take time out to enjoy and laugh.
4. Love myself for who and what I am
Most of the time I see it in younger kids. They don’t care if their clothes don’t match or their hair is a little messy. They aren’t out to prove to be someone or something else they are not. Have you ever noticed that little kids don’t worry about looking in the mirror and when they do it’s to laugh and make faces? They aren’t sitting there worrying about every little thing they hate about themselves. They are who they are and they do not apologize for that.
5. They are people too
This is perhaps the hardest one and the biggest lesson I needed to learn. We get so wrapped up in teaching our children all of the values and ways to be in life as well as worrying about being a good parent that sometimes we forget our kids have feelings too. In my house we are firm believers in “treat others as you wish to be treated.” And I believe this goes both ways. If you treat your kids with respect they are more willing to treat you with respect as well.
Life is forever a journey into the soul. It will never be without learning and growing.
I am blessed every day to have kids who remind me what is true and good in this world and give me the wake-up call I sometimes refuse to give myself.
What things have your kids taught you? I’d love to hear in the comments section below!
No material on this website can be used without permission. All Rights Reserved. Christy Zigweid - 2018
**I am not a licensed counselor nor a medical doctor and the views on this website are solely mine. **
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