Back in the day when I was a teacher, I remember a teacher friend saying to me (Sophie was just a baby) something like - "Enjoy this age. It's harder when they get older." I don't know if those were his exact words, but it was something along those lines.
I didn't really - agree - with him in the moment... I guess I couldn't really relate to him...
but - Today, his words jumped back into my memory. And I'm pretty certain I know what he was trying to say. Because - I'm there now.
I believe I am there. I am at a crossroads - of releasing my child - and giving her a little more independence - all while accepting her for the way God created her.
And, it's hard.
My oldest child is in 1st grade - and some moments are really tough - as I navigate through our relationship. She's temperamental. She's a leader. She's controlling. She's smart.
But, don't get me wrong - she's amazing.
I think I'm realizing - we're a lot alike. We both want control and we're struggling.
What I'm beginning to realize is - I can't control her.
I can't control what she chooses to wear - because she's so sensitive with textures. I can't control how well she brushes her teeth - but I can keep guiding and teaching her. I can't control how fast she eats her breakfast - because she's not super hungry first thing in the morning. I can't control how much time she chooses to put into a homework assignment - because she gets these ideas and goes to town!
You may be saying or thinking - YES YOU CAN! YOU BETTER CONTROL YOUR CHILD.
To me, it's a matter of us ACCEPTING our children for the way God created them and navigating our way through the relationships. Each of our children are so different, and I catch myself comparing.
Of course, I can guide her, coach her, encourage her, shape and mold her, and lovingly discipline my child - and I believe I do all of that!
But I can't control her every action and thought - like I'd like to! The choice is hers and she will face the consequence.
I believe that if I micromanage my children and control every move they make, especially as they grow older -
I become a nagging, yelling, stressed out, control freak and...
I'm NOT going to be that Mom. I don't want to be like that.
I am doing my best to let natural consequences and reality discipline do the teaching - while continuing to mold, guide and lovingly discipline my children.
This is hard.
So, for those of you who have gone before me - or who may be experiencing this now -
I want to be a Mom who is filled with peace and joy - and I try my best to be that Mom each day as I roll out of bed - but some days are harder than others.