Photo by : @lindseypruitt

I have had several conversations with some frazzled and worried parents lately and found myself talking them down from the “I’m the worst parent ever” ledge.

There is so much pressure to have perfect kids + perfect lives but there is such a narrow idea of what that perfection actually is. So let me just let you off the hook, loves.

None of you are perfect. All of you are perfect.

God made us humans so weird, you know? We have all of these emotions + opinions + dreams + preferences + ideals. We want our lives to look like {an original version of} xyz and when they don’t, we freak out. Did you want extrovert babes who excel at everything and you ended up with a quiet contemplative introvert instead? FANTASTIC – they are exactly who Creator created them to be. Did you want a husband who was a prince charming and catered to your every need but instead you fell in love with a rough around the edges encourager who does his best to help you be independent and excel in your own gifts? WHAT A SCORE!

We are going to surprise ourselves along the way. We are going to grow and evolve and decide to be better at life. We are going to realize that even when we find ourselves in places that were never ever a part of the plan, it is exactly where we are supposed to be in this season. AND – our babies are going to surprise us, too. They are going to be who they are so get used to it. Our job as humans and parents is to nurture the nature that is already in us and not to try and create something that is already perfectly created! {LIGHTBULB MOMENT}

I think my son came out of the womb with a barbell in one hand and a football in the other. I tried my absolute best to make him a dancer but he just wouldn’t have it. There was a 50/50 chance my first born would inherit MY genetic code for the arts instead of his father’s VERY VERY STRONG Cornell linebacker genes. And man, did I pray for just that. Alas, his father’s genes won and I had to get over it. I realized after the 4th tap class that he would always end up in tears and look at me like, “whyyyyy are you doing this to me, mommy”. So we changed course. And now I nurture the little monster inside of him instead of trying to tame it.

We have to figure out our spawn… and that takes time and some trial + error. We will make parenting decisions along the way that come from an honest place. They come from the place of wanting the best for our babes and wanting to protect them and wanting them to be happy. Sometimes adjustments will need to be made because we are perfectly imperfect. You will not always get it right – and THAT IS OKAY, okay?

We may need to adjust our parenting tactics and be grown-up enough to realize when we aren’t hitting the mark quite right. If we screw up… it’s not the end of the world… but stop making the same mistakes.

A few weeks ago, I could tell that my son was just in a constant state of frustration with me. Everything I did got on his nerves no matter what. I was trying hard to figure out what I had done. After some intense prodding and some shed tears from us both, he finally opened up to me.

I had been hurting his feelings. Not with what I was saying to him… but how I was saying it. When he finally started talking, the words just fell out of his trembling lips like an avalanche and I was doing my best to try and catch all the debris at it tumbled out. My son’s words ripped me to shreds like a jagged knife straight into my momma-heart.

“It doesn’t matter, mom. You can’t help it – it’s just who you are. You can’t change they way you talk to me.” These are the exact words my baby boy said to me. And it crushed me in all the right ways.

I had been parenting out of frustration… out of that annoyed place that all of us get sometimes. He and his sister had been bickering a lot. They kept needing to be reminded 42 times a day to put their shoes away or not strip naked right in the living room, leaving a pile of clothes everywhere they stopped. We were busy and stretched too thin. Money was stupid tight and they kept asking for all the things. I was in all my feelings all the time. I knew I was right and he was going to hear my loud parent roar because THAT’S WHAT IT MEANS TO PARENT.

When I needed to bring discipline or course-correct, I was approaching it from my mom-exhaustion instead of from love.

One of the many lessons my wise father taught me was that if the way you say something offends, then change immediately. {or as soon as you can push your horns back inside your head and stop being crazy} You don’t necessarily have to change what you are saying, but sometimes we do need to change our delivery. My delivery was waaaaay off and I had to admit that to my son and ask for his forgiveness.

Every family is different. Every parent and child has a unique set of needs and sensitivities. We don’t get to parent our children the way we want all the time. I know so many people who believe that if they don’t spank their kids then they are failing to discipline correctly. Kids NEED to be spanked, right? It’s what I had heard all my life. I mean… I live in the south. It’s what we do.

Horse S*#!

Leading up to having my first child I knew that spanking was going to be a part of raising him – it’s just how it had to be. And I remember the first {and ONLY} time I ever spanked him. I’m not talking about a beating… I’m talking about one swift swat on the butt. It was one of the most traumatic events of my life and I promised God and myself that I would never lay a hand on my child again.

I saw the fear in his eyes and heard the “why, mommy” in his cry. I succeeded at asserting my dominance and parental authority for sure. But I had failed to parent him. What I discovered is that parenting a very unique creation is complicated. It requires us to study our children and find out what disciplines they respond to without breaking their spirits.

10 years later I am still studying my son and discovering every day what he needs. I know that what he absolutely doesn’t need is a frustrated mom. And I am reminded every day how patient and loving my Creator is with ME. When I screw up {more often than I would care to admit}, he doesn’t give me a swift swat on the butt… He doesn’t harshly reprimand His daughter. He comes to me gently and with more love and grace than I deserve. Yes, my actions bring consequences just as our children’s mistakes do. But how can I not extend the same kindness and gentle discipline to my child that Creator gives to me?

This parenting thing is hard. I think we can all agree with that fact. But we are in this together. You’ve got this, moms and dads.



I am sending you all prayers and love because life is hard. Kids are hard. Being adult about the kids is hard. It’s. All. Hard. However, you are capable and smart and you love your babes like no one loves your babes. Pick your head up! Look for a parenting mentor if you need one. {HINT: we ALL need one} Become a student of your children and make adjustments as necessary.

I would love it if you would take a moment and talk to me! Use the comment block at the bottom of this post and tell me about your kids! I’d love to get to know you and learn from all of you fantastic parents out there!!

I sure do love you all! (especially YOU!)


The owner of this website has made a commitment to accessibility and inclusion, please report any problems that you encounter using the contact form on this website. This site uses the WP ADA Compliance Check plugin to enhance accessibility.