Parenting has to be one of the hardest, toughest jobs in the world, I think most parents would agree. From the moment your first child is conceived (not even born yet) you are filled with worry, fear, guilt, happiness, love. You have been given the most precious gift possible….a child to nurture, protect, love, care for, teach and guide. How do we give the best to our children?
Parenting is a balancing act, we have to balance how much we say yes and how much we say no. We balance our time between each child, our partner, work and ourselves. We balance the housework, playtime, free-time and activities. We have to balance guiding children with providing them with the freedom to learn and explore. The list is endless.
There are times when I struggle with this parenting balance. Sometimes my partner may miss out, or I find myself saying no more than yes. This is one I have been struggling with lately, constantly saying no, when I really need to stop and think, could it actually be yes? Sometimes it is good to stop stressing over the little things and go with the flow, does it really matter if the children have an extra five minutes at bedtime? Could I say yes to reading that extra story and cherish the time together, even though it means less time with something/someone else?
Balancing time between your partner and your children, giving time and investment into your relationship can be hard, you are tired, you’ve been talking child talk all day, how do you find the right balance? So often this can go wrong and does, because it takes effort and work on both sides. Date nights are a great way to nurture a relationship, which I pledge to do more of.
Balancing the housework and chores with playtime can be difficult. I feel guilty for doing housework and not playing with the children, but I also feel guilty for the chores not being done because I’ve been playing. As much as I want to say housework doesn’t matter, somethings do still have to be done as a fact of life, yes, we can live with mess, but not serious dirt, bathrooms do have to be cleaned at some point.
When I have finally organised my time suitably, I then worry. I think worry comes with the parenting territory, I worry about my children’s health, the lump I found in their neck, I worry are they happy, do they have friends and basically am I doing the best I can for my children? I worry am I protecting them, but also am I allowing them enough freedom to be themselves and learn? It is so hard not to worry and it will never go away, we as parents just learn to deal with it, balance it and work through each little hiccup like it’s an adventure.
Life is an adventure and parenting is one of the biggest adventures. There are no easy answers to these dilemmas, we all deal with things differently, there is no right or wrong, what works for one may not work for another, everyone’s balance will be different. I am taking a close look at mine, how do you balance everything as a parent?