Parenting One Step at a Time
You’re not in this alone! Being a parent can be exciting, joyful, frustrating, and downright complicated. Trinity wants you to know we’re with you each step of the way. You’re doing good work!
Ohhh…….now I get it…..
I remember being a naive newlywed thinking, “oh how I long for a baby”. After a few years of trying, a baby was finally on the way and soon I was flooded with advice from loving family, friends, and even the ladies in the grocery store. I listened politely, nodded a lot, and thought to myself, “oh, you’re nice, but I’ve got this…no worries, no fear… I’m going to knock this parenthood thing out of the park”.
Well, now I get it.
I was so worried about getting it right, that I didn’t really listen to those who had walked this parenthood journey ahead of me. I didn’t listen when they said things like:
“nothing can prepare you for the love you will instantly feel for that tiny human.”
“you’ll be exhausted…for years”
“don’t rush them into potty training – diapers are a lot easier to travel in!”
“don’t worry about that pacifier, no one ever stands up to receive their diploma with a binky in their mouth”
“having another child?…just watch, they’ll be so different from your oldest”
Through countless sleepless nights, picky eaters, potty training disasters, tantrums, failed hygiene lessons, sports team rejections, homework dilemmas, discipline mistakes and so much more…
Well, now I get it.
Everyone on this parenthood journey knows that it will be harder – and more rewarding – than you could ever imagine at the start. And at some point on the journey you will probably begin to feel compelled to tell others about the things you have learned. That’s why I’m so passionate about bringing the “Just a Phase” project to Trinity. We all need support, advice, compassion and insight for this parenthood journey. This page will offer some of our favorite posts, blogs, podcasts and reminders from Christian leaders around the country.
You see, now I get it….
And if you’re ready to listen, I’d love to share some thoughts with you!
~ Kelly Falck (Director of Faith Formation, Mother of 3)
That sometimes the best intentions are in need of redemption
– Death Cab for Cutie, “You Are a Tourist”
I read an article from 2016 that said people without kids, in the United States, are way happier than people who have kids. Because you are reading a parenting blog, I’m assuming you are one of those people with kids and this news is less than inspiring.
Maybe it even confirms the thoughts you’ve had when you are up for the third time that night dealing with a child who claims bad dreams, monsters under the bed and shifting shadows to keep them from sleeping. Or when you walked in on a toddler creating a masterpiece with a purple sharpie on your new white upholstered ottoman. Or when you get a call from the principal saying your high schooler has been caught cutting class for the fourth time this year and major disciplinary actions are going to be taken. Or when you stumble upon the web history of your middle schooler and can’t believe the content they’ve had access to and hidden from you for who knows how long.
I love to live on the edge. At least that is what I tell my kids when they are all frustrated with me. I am that person. That person that drives until the “E” light in my car has been shining at me for about 30 miles. It doesn’t help that now my car tells me exactly how many miles I have to “E.”
I drive until there are no more miles left. It just has an asterisk on the screen. (I assumed when it said * that meant there was no more gas, but I’m happy to report that you can actually make it at least 5 miles with nothing but an asterisk.) I’ve learned that this drives my middle child crazy. He worries about his mama. He likes to know I’m not going to run out of gas, that I will not be stuck somewhere, that I am safe. One day, as I realized we were near “E” he snapped, “MOM! You are dangerously close to empty.”
It’s that time of year. The stale leftover cookies are in the trash and I’m eyeing the tree, wishing it would pack up and walk itself to the basement. I’m ready to make a clean sweep of the holidays. Christmas is over.
This means a brand new year ahead and I’m thinking about how my family can make the most of it.
As parents, we all want our kids to develop good habits. We hope they will do difficult things, learn perseverance and speak the truth. We have a list of a thousand things we hope for them, but how to we help them build those habits? What does that process look like?
Growing up, I always knew I wanted a family of my own—the wife, the kids, the whole bit. In college, I remember having “deep” conversations with friends about how I was going to do family right. I remember thinking, I’m going to be a great husband and dad.
Then I became a husband. I instantly found out that I wasn’t all that I had dreamed I would be.
Several nights ago our daughter came to us with a curious look in her eyes, almost as if she was embarrassed or did something wrong and on the verge of tears. We dropped what we were doing and asked what was wrong, but she was hesitant to let whatever was bubbling below the surface come out for us to hear. After some back and forth, she finally told us what was on her mind.
She had questions—lots of questions…
Don’t Miss It: Parent Every Week Like It Counts
Limited copies of Reggie Joiner’s book “Don’t Miss It: Parent Every Week Like It Counts” are available at Trinity for $5.
“If you are a parent, don’t miss reading this book. It will change how you see the potential of your kids forever. It could also change how you parent this week.”–Jon Acuff, New York Times bestselling author
Christian Family Blogs we love!
Just a Phase – Don’t Miss It
There are approximately 936 weeks from when a child is born until they graduate high school. That could seem like a lot, or it could seem like a very short countdown leading to a panic or depression. But, what if, in realizing our limited time, we lean in together, family and church, intentionally and covenantally, to make the most of it.
Parenting Resources from Around the Web:
The Parent Cue – A brand new way to look at parenting and our journey together. Get connected to the folks at THE PARENT CUE to find thoughtful, funny, inspiring resources to accompany you on this journey.
ReFocus – ReFocus, a Ministry for Transition, is centered around a desire to equip and support the home as the place of primary spiritual growth and faith formation by partnering with parents/caregivers. Here you can find a wide variety of informaiton for parents including newsletters, books, activities and additional websites.
Sparkhouse Family Blog – An online community for parents who want to be thoughtful about how faith shapes their home and family.
Sticky Faith for Parents (Fuller Youth Institute) – Sticky Faith Parents is designed for parents who are concerned about how faith is shaping their children’s life, what will happen to their faith when they leave home, and how to help build Sticky Faith in their kids – and provides practical relationship and programming ideas that develop long-term faith in teenagers.
ParentFurther (Search Institute) – ParentFurther is an online resource – with audio, video, and print resources – to help families strengthen relationships through shared activities; help parents understand the ages and stages of childhood and adolescents and help young people prepare for the future.
PBS Parents – PBS Parents is a trusted resource that’s filled with information on child development and early learning. It also serves as a parent’s window to the world of PBS KIDS, offering access to educational games and activities inspired by PBS KIDS programs.
Tumblon – Tumblon helps parents understand, nurture, and remember their children’s development by bringing together relevant and trustworthy content, secure blogging and photo sharing, and specific, interactive developmental information.
Zero to Three (National Center for Infants, Toddlers, and Families) – This parent portal provides resources to help parents tune in to what makes your child tick, and to guide them in thinking about the best way to meet their child’s individual needs, including resources on ages and stages, play, socio-emotional development, getting ready for school, positive parenting, and more.