When your children become teens & adults is when you can easily pinpoint EVERY mistake you’ve ever made as a parent. From one parent to another, I hope these 3 things help you! ❤️
#1 – Don’t helicopter and enable them. Seriously, they can’t function on their own when you do. It’s scary. Hell, even when you don’t enable them, most high school graduates can’t do some of the basics on their own (laundry, write a check, take care of their taxes…..) so teach them the important stuff they need to know. And don’t feel like you have to fix EVERYTHING. Because you don’t. *Out of everything I’m going to share with you, this is the one I WISH we did more than anything else* I totally smothered my kids in love & helping them in every possible way (including catching them when they fell – instead of letting them ‘feel’ how much the ground hurt)….and am now seeing how damaging this is. Just don’t.
#2 – Make them do sports (or physical activities) even when they throw huge crying on the floor temper-tantrums because they don’t want to do it. Make them. Because it serves them well to learn how to lose. (Gosh that sounds crazy saying that, but you discover more about your inner strength when you don’t always win). 99% of the time they end up liking it – or at least challenging themselves to perform better. Bonus: colleges look for “grit” in kids. In other words, they look for kids who do an activity – especially in competition settings where the possibility of losing is involved – for AT LEAST 2 years in a row. And if in your kid’s application essay they share how much they hated it, and then triumphed, they’ve just increased their acceptance rate ten-fold.
#3 – Let them fail. Let them fail hardcore if you have to. Help them up – only if/when they ask for it. But let them make their mistakes so they can learn from them. Decisions you make can negatively/positively affect the REST OF YOUR LIFE. We know this. They don’t. Let them fail while you can still easily protect/help them with little things (before they get to be big things).
There are many more smaller mistakes I’ve made and wish I hadn’t, but seriously these have been the biggest “a-ha” moments and take aways from the past few years. Good luck Mamas! Sending you lots and lots of love!