Pull-ups, Pacifiers And Destiny

Pull-ups, Pacifiers And Destiny

Figuring out the hidden lessons in parenting.
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Fleeting moments, much like shooting stars, are what life is made of. It is impossible to catch them all, no brain capable of remembering every detail and not enough time in the world to relive them. Parenting is only a speck, only one fleeting moment out of our short lives. Children are only children for so long. There are only so many lessons a parent can teach a child and only so many lessons a child can learn. Whether you believe in God or another higher power, you were born equipped with a specific life plan, tailored specifically to you - otherwise known as "destiny."

Throughout time, you are given the knowledge to be equipped with certain lessons to teach, certain lessons to learn and certain lessons to relive over and over again. Some of these lessons are easy, like learning how to ride a bike or how to tie your shoes. Those lessons are almost never forgotten. Some lessons are much deeper, more evolved and over thought, like when to ask for help. Then there are some of these lessons you relive, time and time again. These are lessons in humility.

As a parent, I hate to admit failure. I hate to admit that sometimes I don't meet certain goals I set for myself or our children. Our three-year-old is still in pull ups despite the fact she was potty trained over six months ago. Our almost two-year-old is now taking a pacifier and I'm not 100 percent sure why. These are failures in my eyes. Failures that I live with every day. These failures are lessons in humility. While I dwell on the fact that I feel like I'll be sending our oldest off to college with pull ups in her bag and trying to pry a pacifier out of a teenager’s mouth, I am also humbled.

For whatever reason, I was given the chance to be a parent. I was trusted by God, by a higher power and I was given a child. Not just one child, but two. Yes, our three-year-old is in pull ups still. Yes, our almost two-year-old is now using a pacifier. These aren’t really failures though, are they? After looking back and reevaluating everything I have ever believed in, everything I have ever promoted, I fall back on destiny. Maybe our three-year-old is still in pull ups because I’m too afraid to let her go. Maybe our two-year-old is now taking a pacifier because she can sense the little changes that are happening so fast. These changes are all a part of growing up and maybe that’s what I am truly afraid of.

I am not afraid of failure. I am not afraid to ask for help. I am afraid of time. My biggest problems right now are the pull ups and pacifiers. Those problems are temporary and can be controlled. In a few years, my problems are going to be much bigger, much more worrisome and they will keep me up at night. The worst part about those problems is that they aren’t always going to be something that I, as a mom, can fix. Moms can’t fix broken hearts. They can’t fix friendships gone south. Moms can’t make all the hard decisions in her children's lives.

This is where, I, as a parent have lessons to learn. I must suck it up, put my big girl panties on, and learn to let go. For the first time, I need to let our children be in control. I must learn to trust our three year old enough to let her wear big girl panties without scolding her if she has an accident. I must learn how to allow our youngest to fully take in what it means to be a big girl and completely take the pacifiers away. I must learn to have faith in all of the lessons I have instilled in our children so far and have faith that everything is going be okay.

I must learn to appreciate these fleeting moments because that’s all they are. Our wonderful children are asleep in their beds under our roof right now. One day they will be under a different roof, perhaps in a different state, wherever their destiny takes them. For now, I just need to try to catch every moment, try to remember every detail of their sweet little faces, and try to relive all of these moments over and over again. There is only so much time and so many opportunities to be a shooting star in our children's lives.

Cover Image Credit: Flickr

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I Blame My Dad For My High Expectations

Dad, it's all your fault.
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I always tell my dad that no matter who I date, he's always my number one guy. Sometimes I say it as more of a routine thing. However, the meaning behind it is all too real. For as long as I can remember my dad has been my one true love, and it's going to be hard to find someone who can top him.

My dad loves me when I am difficult. He knows how to keep the perfect distance on the days when I'm in a mood, how to hold me on the days that are tough, and how to stand by me on the days that are good.

He listens to me rant for hours over people, my days at school, or the episode of 'Grey's Anatomy' I watched that night and never once loses interest.

He picks on me about my hair, outfit, shoes, and everything else after spending hours to get ready only to end by telling me, “You look good." And I know he means it.

He holds the door for me, carries my bags for me, and always buys my food. He goes out of his way to make me smile when he sees that I'm upset. He calls me randomly during the day to see how I'm doing and how my day is going and drops everything to answer the phone when I call.

When it comes to other people, my dad has a heart of gold. He will do anything for anyone, even his worst enemy. He will smile at strangers and compliment people he barely knows. He will strike up a conversation with anyone, even if it means going way out of his way, and he will always put himself last.

My dad also knows when to give tough love. He knows how to make me respect him without having to ask for it or enforce it. He knows how to make me want to be a better person just to make him proud. He has molded me into who I am today without ever pushing me too hard. He knew the exact times I needed to be reminded who I was.

Dad, you have my respect, trust, but most of all my heart. You have impacted my life most of all, and for that, I can never repay you. Without you, I wouldn't know what I to look for when I finally begin to search for who I want to spend the rest of my life with, but it might take some time to find someone who measures up to you.

To my future husband, I'm sorry. You have some huge shoes to fill, and most of all, I hope you can cook.

Cover Image Credit: Logan Photography

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My Parents Hate Each Other But They Say They Love All Of Me

I'd like to think they didn't hate half of who I am.

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A child is born with DNA inherited from their father and mother, a mix of both of their parents. So, what happens when your parents divorce and end up hating one another? Do they hate half of who you are?

I am a child of divorce. It was messy and a very hard few years for me to see my parents separate. To have a family, and then suddenly not. What made it harder was to see how much my parents ended up hating each other. To this day, over a decade later they struggle to even be in the same room as one another if something comes up where they have to be.

The complaints about the other make my head and heart hurt.

There's always this nagging feeling in the back of my mind. I'm a mixture of my parents. I have qualities and DNA of both of them. Do they hate half of who I am? When they see parts of me that belong to the other do they get annoyed? They claim to love me and who I am, but how do I know that's actually true?

I'm always jealous when I see other kids whose parents are divorced but still either get along or know who to just live with the other. When one says to have fun when they drop them off somewhere else or talk to each other. Mine say nothing to each other. It's as if they want to pretend the other no longer exists.

I don't want to have to choose between the two. If there is an event we all attend I don't want to have to say who I'd prefer to sit with. Nor do I want to hear them talk about how the other is there is what they're doing that the other one doesn't like. I'd like to pretend that for just a little while, I could sit with my family and be happy.

All I want is for them to get along enough to make their children happy.

They're divorced now and remarried. There is barely any time they have to even see each other. Can't they find peace in that? Sit in the same area together and be fine knowing that they are happy with their lives now?

I've learned to generally live and accept how things are. I try my best to ignore it. That doesn't mean it doesn't hurt though. Especially when one says that I do something like the other. It brings back that fear that they don't like that part of me. I feel like I have to hide part of who I am when I'm with them in hopes that they don't have to think anything bad about me.

I really want to believe that they don't hate half of me.

I'm sorry Mom and Dad. I don't wish to make either of you feel bad. I don't think either of you are bad parents or bad in any way for that matter. I love both of you and everything that makes you, well, you. Even parts that may annoy me, it's still who you are. I just hope that you love me for all of who I am, even the parents you secretly may not like.

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