As previously stated, Daniel and I live about three hours from our family. Most weekends, we travel back home and back together. It is a drive that we kind of dread, but we make it through. We haven’t been visiting as often because he has been playing soccer on Saturdays. However, this drive back was pretty cool, as we had been down there for about a week or so.
We were talking, as he always talks my head off. Usually it drives me crazy, but honestly, this time, I welcomed every question and every word of caution provided by the Superhero. When we talk, I truly listen to what he is saying. Sometimes its just rubbish and sometimes, it is insightful and I find this as an opportunity to get to know my child.
He was teaching me how to spell things. (How adorable!) He was teaching me how to spell “Blippi” and so he requests that I repeat after him. B-L-I, PP-I 🙂 I fell out laughing and said,
“Haha!! You said PP!!”
To my surprise, he was not amused by my display of immaturity. He even retorted with, “That’s not funny, Mom. Grow up!” I laughed even harder, which forced us both to laugh out loud. With all of this laughter, it’s easy to forget the struggles of the day and to remember that laughter is a requirement – a necessity.
I think, sometimes, we get so caught up in wanting to maintain a certain persona in front of people. We want people to see us a certain way: mature, responsible, etc. I think that it is exceptionally important for our children to see us in different light: how we handle conflict, how we handle happiness, discipline, etc. It is important to generate a well rounded openness in your relationship with your child. I truly believe that in striving to foster an environment of honesty with your child, you have to also represent that same honesty.
I never want my child to fear me. I don’t know if that is the case for other parents, or it is just a by-product of their style of parenting. I can understand that my style of parenting my seem permissive, but it is much more authoritative. However, I fear the folks who are caught up in authoritarian. I know these words seem the same but heres a link that will assist in breaking down the difference for you. This article is brief and straight to the point in describing the differences in these styles of parenting.
The article that I referred to also briefly discusses the differences between “discipline” and “punishment”. I promise to discuss that in a later post!!
When I consider my parenting style, I think in terms of shapes. I have a more round, circular, spherical type of parenting (authoritative) where as others may have a more square, cuboidal type of parenting (authoritarian). This makes the most sense to me, which is weird (I sound like a 1st Grader). Either way, this visualization of the different types of parenting helps me to make sense of one versus the other. My style is more of a go with the flow, instilling values in my child, but values that are provoked by his experiences. I assist him in making his own decisions without enforcing my own views. However, I urge him, through some of my own experiences and examples, to learn from his mistakes and help to not even make the mistakes in the first place. In a more square vantage point, the path is pretty much laid out for you and there is less fluidity and flexibility, in my opinion, from my understanding.
These thoughts are my own, derived from my own experiences.