Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Parenting is heart work

Joshua has a problem with hitting. He especially likes to put his hands on his brother. I realize that all too often I just say stop doing that with no real consequence. Well lately Jason is feeling quit abused by this.

Tonight the boys have their cousin's over. Josh put his hands on Jason upstairs. I put him in time and out and he apologized to his brother.
About 15 min. late Josh kicked Jason. Again he went in time out and Jason gave him mercy and let him out after Josh once again apologized. I told Josh that next time he hurt or tried to hurt someone he was going to bed until tomorrow.

Of course it happened again and he pushed Jason. So I had to stay true to my word. He is now in bed (in my room, since kids are playing upstairs.) As I type this he is crying. My heart aches. I want to let him out, I want him to be happy. But I know that that will not help him to be the man God someday wants him to be.

Parenting is hard work, but more so it is heart work.

We have to, in love, show them boundaries and consequences every time they cross those boundaries.

I have to admit I don't have healthy boundaries myself. This make it harder to show my kids them and then follow through on consequences when they cross the line.

I mean they get confused if Tuesday they hit and nothing happens, but Wed. they are given a consequence for the same offense. They will only really learn if the lines are clear daily and so are the consequences.

We have the if then and blessing charts by Doorpost and these are wonderful, so kids know what to expect when they don't do the right thing and what is right and wrong. It is all on the charts. They are very helpful.

But still I NEED to be more consistent! I also need to set healthy boundaries for myself.

The more I parent (I have almost been at this 13 years,) the more I realize that to be a good parent I need to seek God in all I do, and I need to be a more healthy, complete person.
I mean healthy, in my walk with God, healthier in the physical sense of exercise and food, healthy in relationships with family and friends, and healthy in my view of myself.

Honestly, sometimes I don't want to work on myself, but I realize my kids need to be healthier and they are learning from me. Laziness and parenting do not go together. (Don't get me wrong lazy days are great, I mean lazy in when they are fighting I just sit there and say, "stop" without actually doing anything, which by the way I have done.)

I had no idea at 18 what I was getting into being a mom. I thought is was all lovely and sunshine and joy (and at times it is,) but it is work. Hard work and heart work on my part and theirs.

I do wish I was healthier than so my kids didn't have to go through this process with me and I could be healthier now. Yet I am grateful that I am working on it now and not after I am done raising my boys.

And I am so grateful to have these two boys in my life and to be their mom.