Learning grace and patience in motherhood
Motherhood is by far the hardest thing I’ve ever done in my life and if you’re a mama too I’m sure you can relate. Being a mama can overflow my heart with love and bring me down to my knees all in the same day.
I am definitely not a perfect mother and I don’t even want to pretend to be. I yell at my kids, I lose patience, I need a break from them every now and then, and I secretly eat chocolate so that they don’t take it from me. I adore my kids and love the fact that I can stay home with them to raise them and teach them and play with them daily. I know how valuable that is for both of us and I don’t regret making the decision to do that. But it can take a toll too.
There are two things I’ve learned that really help me make it through. I’m working hard to always show grace and patience with my children. My goal as a mama is to be a light to my kids. I want to show them God’s love, teach them God’s ways, and raise them to live for the Lord. The best way to do that is by example.
It’s not my job to control them. It’s not my job to change them. It’s my job to teach them. And in those moments when it seems like everything is out of my control and everyone is melting down at the same time, I need to remember this most. I need to focus on controlling my own emotions, because I can, and being a good example for how they can control theirs too. They are still little. They are still learning how to do life. And it’s my job to teach them the right way to do that. I can’t be a good teacher if I am losing my own patience instead of using each moment as a chance to show them God’s love and grace.
Understand this, my dear brothers and sisters: You must all be quick to listen, slow to speak, and slow to get angry.
That’s definitely easier said than done, but I’ve also come to realize that as parents, we all mess up sometimes. We are human and make mistakes. But kids are resilient and will usually forgive and forget easier than we would. I’ve dwelled on things that I felt like I could have done better, but more than likely my kids moved on way before I could.
Being a parent is not for the faint at heart, but it’s a learning experience that we go through daily. When we become mamas, we don’t know what to do because we’ve never had to do it before. On top of that, each of our children is different and will require different styles of parenting. There’s really no choice but to learn as we go and do the best we can.
Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience.
I recently finished reading the book Parenting by Paul David Tripp and this book opened my heart to the grace I need as a parent and the grace I need to show my kids who need it more than me. It helped me define my role as a parent and understand what my kids need from me most. This is a book that I’m sure I’ll read over and over again as the seasons of life require different things as a mama and I recommend adding it to your bookshelf too.
Learning to always show grace and patience in motherhood is a daily process just like everything else. I’m learning to recognize what pushes me over the edge and working to avoid those things. I’m choosing to focus on my kids first and forget about the other things that need to be done, and although that is not always easy, I know it makes everyone much happier that way.
If you’re in the same season as me and trying to navigate the waters of parenthood, don’t feel like you have to have it all figured out. I struggle with wanting to always get it right, but it doesn’t have to be perfect. Motherhood is a journey we take with our children and it something that we get to do, not something we have to do. We can wear the badge of mama with honor and do the best we can for our kids each day.