Over the past three years I have made an extraordinary effort to become a respectful parent for the sake of my children. This style of parenting does not come naturally to me and I have certainly had my fair share of slip ups and regressions as I tried and failed to get it right. But I recently figured out where I was going wrong.
It is Day 8 of RIE Foundations today and as I begin anticipating the end of the course I am left with mixed emotions. I feel complete and utter sadness that I will be leaving this safe RIE bubble that has been created for me by our facilitator, Deborah Carlisle Solomon and her intern Michelle along with the 7 other women who have together made this experience an altogether enriching one. But I also feel excitement at what lies ahead when I return to my homeland with newly acquired understandings and a massive spring in my step.
On Day 3 of RIE Foundations we closely examined play. We looked at its importance and how to create an environment optimal for a child’s play, including examining the significance of the parent-child relationship in the ability for a child to play.
It was a day of many aha moments for me. Would you believe, I didn’t think I would really have any aha moments over here? I thought I knew the ins and outs of respectful parenting and was just looking to deepen my understanding. Turns out, I have a lot to learn.
Day Two of RIE foundations and I relearned something I have known for a long while but still have trouble finding peace with – It’s okay if we’re not perfect.
This was not actually the main focus of the day, we were delving more into gross motor development in infants but somewhere along the way Mummy guilt came up from all the women in the room who had discovered RIE late – well after their babies were born.
We spoke a lot about the importance of respect today. We unpacked what both respect and disrespect can look like in their many forms and what, as adults, being treated in either of these ways can make us feel.
Being a confident leader is vital for our children if we are wanting to use discipline to guide them to develop their own self-control. When we think of confident leaders in our own lives, someone who flies off the handle at every misdemeanor is not an image we would typically conjure nor is someone who shies away from conflict, lest we hurt someone’s feelings. A confident leader is a balance between these two images and is something that, as an emerging respectful parent, has taken me some time to get my head around.
This phase, too, shall pass!
If there is one phrase that has helped me more than anything else on my rollercoaster parenting ride, it is this little one.
This Phase, too, shall pass!
I can’t remember where I first heard it. It might have been whilst trawling through endless respectful parenting forums searching for answers or maybe as I read through the plethora of wise words on Janet Lansbury’s blog. Either way, they have been nothing short of a God send. They are my sanity savers.
Do you ever lose it at your kids? Like, really lose it? I’m sure for most of us, there are definitely times when we are pushed to the brink by our children and before we know it we have given in to our emotions and lost it at the kids.