perfect is…

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Having kids and raising kids is a hard job.  I am willing to bet there is not one parent out there that can deny that.  The many, many times that I, myself have questioned the way to be the perfect parent.  It all begins even before they are born.  Am I eating the right things?  Did I take my prenatal vitamins early enough?  Is this the safest carseat?  And the mattress?  Is it firm enough? 

And then, as a nurse I see women struggle with this all the time.  The frustrations of breastfeeding and the expectation of themselves to not fail and give a bottle.  I know—I was right there—I experienced it and felt it too.  I see it all the time with patients and friends.  The constant questioning of doing what is right.  Cloth diapers versus disposable diapers?  Pacifier or no pacifier?  Homemade wipes or Pampers or a generic brand?  Daycare, babysitters, or be a stay-at-home mom?  Preschool or no preschool?  Potty training by two or you have failed? 

And THAT is all before they hit kindergarten and elementary school!  YIKES!!  And I feel it even more now with teenage junior high girls.  Steve and I have NO IDEA what we are doing raising kids.  We are constantly questioning what is “right” and if we are doing the “right” thing.  And every once in awhile, we beat ourselves up about decisions we make.  And even sometimes the decisions are kids make.  Teaching responsibility, respect for others, compassion for others, and integrity, hardwork ethics, morals, and the list goes on and on!

Exhausting, isn’t it?  That is why this little blessing pictured above grabbed me and encouraged me so much.  No, I am not a perfect parent.  There is no way to be a perfect parent.  We are not called to be perfect.  We are called to be.  To be everything God called us to be for the children He gave as a gift to us.  Part of your million ways of being a good parent could be and most likely is very different than mine.  And that is OK.  Love your kiddos.  Don’t try to be perfect.  And embrace the “mom” or “dad” you were created to be for the people that you created.  That’s a load off now, right?

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