In a web site called Active Parenting Now, the front page reads, “the purpose of parenting is to protect and prepare children to survive and thrive in the kind of society in which we live.”
Participating in 4 session of “Positive Parenting” has helped me explore and heighten ways that I can be the best parent I can be and guide my children the best way I know how.
As a parent, I have worn different hats. Wearing a white nursing caps, an olive visor as leader to a Cub Scout troupe, a translucent covering as a healer, a hat of a coach and a wife, I have learned that the most important job of all is raising my children.
Parenting is a twenty-four hour job and never ends. We are a friend, a coach, and an adviser. And, we have many expectations for our children. Here is a list I have gathered from the parents I have trained:
I grew up in a different culture and era where children were seen, but not heard. This was a circumstance that I had to cope with. For instance, when I was growing up, I saw little of my mother, only in the evenings. There was no close bonding mother-daughter relationship and her work was never-ending. However, I was able to understand and appreciate her in the last two years of her life. I learned more about her in the last two years of her life than in the twenty plus years when I was growing up. We grew very close and she became my hero.
She was the foundation and the cornerstone of the family, a woman with strength and determination. She kept our family together. Though our family structure was different, and she did not have the opportunity to raise us, as she would have liked, she found time to teach us values. She taught us to be respectful in our day-to-day interactions, have compassion for life, be grateful for what we were given, and she emphasized the importance of education. After all, the freedom to be educated was why we left our country.
It is because of my extensive education in the field of healing that I have learned that the biggest investment that we have as a parent is time that we spend with our children through play, and being available for them.
I believe styles of parenting usually are learned from our parents. Then again, it is our children who teach us how to parent. There is no manual. Bogged down with work and commitments, people are exhausted and need a break. Then children’s DVD’s. IPods, and computer extravaganzas need to be satisfied. It may become confusing, but the essential reality is that children need us to be their friend.
They need someone to talk to, advice and guidance to find better choices. They want a play friend, someone to watch their baseball games, and clap at their Tae Kwon Do tournaments. They crave for parents to view their accomplishments anticipating faces that exude pride.
Being a parent is like creating a garden. A parent provides necessities such as providing sustenance, tendering care, and suggesting guidance like a gardener turns the soil, adds the fertilizes, and trims the weeds. Like the bleeding heart flower, pruning is critical when it comes to shape the beauty of a child.
I am proud of my children, but at times I feel helpless and wonder how my parenting can improve. Realizing that I do not have to be perfect, I was able to accept circumstances. Tomorrow is a new day for new ideas. And, I can make changes in my daily life to find the time to invest in my children. For every child is like a precious Rock waiting to be polish into a diamond.
There was a father who worked seven days a week and every week, he gave his child ten peso.
One day the child asked his father “how many peso do you get an hour?”
“I get ten pesos an hour,” the father said.
“If I pay you eighty Peso will you stay home and play with me?” the child asked.
Not only will I never forget this story, but also, it reminds me of my mother. As a child I would have given her everything I had to keep her home. As a mother, I understood why she was unable to. There are many stories to be told and this is one I will never forget.
It is important to be grateful for each day. I realize, unlike my mother, I am lucky to have the choice of staying home and taking care of my children in the way I choose. I can be their role model. Not everyone is able have this type of leisure. However, like my mother, everyone has the ability to do the best they can, and focus on what they are able to do in order to heighten their children’s wellbeing.
By Hue Anh Nguyen (Relationship Coach and Intuitive Healer) http://www.polarity4harmony.com