I have no idea what I thought parenting would be like but it certainly wasn't what it has turned out to be. It has had (of course) it's moments of great joy and laughter but it has also a lot of moments of
what the heck? I didn't sign up for this!
I feel constantly underqualified to parent these three little beings and my desperate prayer is that I don't mess them up and leave them in therapy for their adult lives. Every so often I find myself astounded at the things I never thought I'd have to teach someone else.
I knew they'd have to learn how to read, to cook, to crochet, to share and how to use a fork etc but lessons I have had to give that have caught me by surprise have included...
- how to identify a problem and find a solution
- how to make a decision (what to wear, what to eat etc)
- how to core an apple
- how to wipe your bum (properly)
- how to arrive somewhere on time
- what common sense is
- how to wait
- how to tidy your room. Goodness, how does someone who struggles with untidiness teach someone else to be tidy?
- how to keep your temper
- how to not stress. I'm still learning this one myself!
It has also surprised me how long it takes for these things to be learned, how many repeats it takes. Don't you find it incredible that we humans manage to get through childhood into adulthood with most of the skills we need to function independently and relate to other people? More or less.
How does that happen?
On Sunday I had the privilege of holding a very new little baby. She was just two weeks old. We've had four babies born to people we know in the last month or so and another one is due in the next couple of weeks.
Here are two of the five. Eventually there'll be four girls and a boy. Aren't they the most amazing little beings? I'm completely in awe when I see a newborn and blown away when I see my girls and think that they were once at this stage. I wonder how on earth they got from here to where they are now.
What have you had to teach someone else that you thought they would automatically know how to do? If you're a parent what have you had to teach your kids that surprised you?