Simple thought for today: Although there are times when parenting is overwhelmingly difficult, rest in knowing that progress is being made.
Through the years, I have felt like screaming and running my fist in the wall due to frustration in parenting. I was certain that nothing I said was getting through to my pre-teens and teens.
I was wrought with fear that my children would make the same mistakes that I had or choose the wrong path. I sit with many parents throughout the week and hear this same fear from them.
A few weeks ago, something strange, but wonderful happened. My teens were part of a weekend teen conference at my local church. There were more than a thousand teens there from all over the country and it was a phenomenal experience. Parents were able to watch online and we caught bits and pieces of it. Both my teens asked to have friends spend the night. We had a total of eight teens that were here.
It was 12:30am. I was tired, and the kids were being way too loud for that hour. But … on my way back to correct them, I stopped. I stood outside each of their doors and heard the innocent giggles. I stopped and smiled. I didn’t say a word.
There are parents all over the world who would like to have the problem of their kids hanging out in their rooms with friends a bit too loud. I walked away, put ear plugs in and went to bed. It filled my heart with joy.
Later that weekend, my 15-year-old son, who is sometimes the nicest kid in the world and other times, the grumpiest, comes to me while I was planting flowers and asks if I needed help. You heard me right! He actually volunteered to help. For the next three hours, we sat side-by-side and planted flowers, laughed and shared stories. It was priceless. I was reminded in that moment that I am probably far too hard on him, sometimes, and that yes, he is growing up to be a fine young man.
Author / Speaker, Jennifer Maggio, is one of the nation’s leading authorities on single parent issues. She has been featured on countless radio and television programs. Her critically-acclaimed new book, Overwhelmed: The Life of a Single Mom is selling out nationwide. She is also the founder of Overwhelmed: The Single Moms Magazine. For more info, visit http://www.thelifeofasinglemom.com