The Hard Days

This week we had a couple rough start mornings followed by a rough practice with my daughter’s team I coach where my own daughter kept interrupting when I was trying to keep the girl’s attention. Then I heard from my sitter that my younger daughter had a hard time listening.

We got home, had a family meeting, enacted some consequences and had a much better morning. Then this morning happened.

I had texted my husband last night while he was coaching my daughter’s soccer practice, to get some cash out at the ATM because my oldest needed some tomorrow for school (why oh why are there SO many events in the last 2 months of school?!) and we needed it for various other things coming up, like paying our sitter for the practices I coach to watch my other kids.

Anyway, said daughter who is not supposed to be on phones or devices at all this week was using his phone to practice her songs for her music field trip coming up. So he missed my text, didn’t get cash out and this morning I had to scramble to get it together.

Then I tried sending an email to the parents of the girls I coach and it wasn’t working from my phone, I tried using my computer and it died and the charger apparently no longer is working. I was thoroughly frustrated before 7 am.

My daughter started asking me random irrelevant questions as I’m trying to get everyone out the door and I got very short with her. Then I felt terrible about it.

From talking to other moms, I know for a fact that my experience is not unique to only me. We all have date like this and they tend to make us feel like complete failures.

The truth IS that raising kids today is so much different than it’s ever been before. Some of it, we put on ourselves, for sure, but some of it, is just that our culture is so different too. Technology makes it different. I could probably write a book (if I had the time, ha!) on just how different it is raising kids now than it was when I was a kid.

My point is this. If you are a parent that is trying to raise your kids counter-culturally, it’s going to be very difficult. It’s hard to be involved with your kids and take an active role parenting them. You’re going to slip up and you’re going to mess up. Ultimately though, being involved is what’s important.

I’ve been thinking about running lately and why I love it so much. It’s not always easy to put into words but I’m trying because these girls I coach, I really want to give them the gift of running.

There are days that I am excited to run. The sun is shining and the weather is perfect. Then there are days when the wind chill is -10 and it’s a blizzard. Or the rain is just pouring down and it’s not a warm rain. On these days, I can’t exactly say that it’s easy to get out there. But when I do, when I’m gritting through the elements or fighting off a virus or dealing with sore muscles, or…or…or, any time it’s not all flowers or rainbows, THOSE are the runs that empower me.

It’s not something you can experience in a video game. The feeling of your body, being pounded by the elements and getting through it, one step at a time. The confidence you feel afterwards is invigorating.

It’s the same with faith. It’s usually when we’re in the eye of the storm that our faith blossoms the most, not during times of plenty.

So parents, if you’re struggling and feeling defeated, take heart. Gritting through these difficult times is helping you grow. Putting in the hard work now, digging in, and showing your family that you’re in it, no matter what shows them the depth of your love for them. Keep failing and learning and picking yourself back up.

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