I want to ask you - parents and parents-to-be - what does a vocation of parenting look like to you? What do you feel you are called to be for your kids? What do you feel the need to model in your homes? What do you love best about your kids? And what do you hope for them in the future? Even if you don't have kids yet I think these are important questions to think about. Maybe by thinking about them now I'll have some clue about how to proceed when I do in fact become a mother. So blogland, please share your thoughts with me. I'm very curious.
It's such an intriguing question that I thought it warranted a blog post instead of a comment at her place. That and I'm not getting any closer to post 700 this week - it's just not been a blogging type of week. Too busy! I know, that's a cop-out, but it's the truth. Anyway, this is post #677 and I promise we'll get to #700 before the end of the month.
So, the vocation of parenting. What does it look like to me? Massive confusion. :-) Actually, 99% of the time it is the greatest privilege and burden any of us can ever bear. There's a movie where Keanu Reeves notes that you have to have a license for damn near everything except bearing children; it's one of the most painfully correct movie lines I've ever heard (and the fact that Mr. Whoa utters it always blows my mind a little, too). The thought of what happens to my girls if I screw up too often is ever-present. I'm called to be a lot of things to my girls: provider, supporter, comforter, discipline-giver, teacher, etc. But the deepest calling I have as a parent (and I think Kristin would agree with me on this) is to be one who loves them deeply and models a giving, nurturing love for my spouse and the rest of my family as well. Even the great mistakes I'll make will be less damaging if they are made in deep love.
What do I love best about my kids? Well, in Ainsley it is her joy. We have been so blessed by the presence of this happy little girl in our lives. Some of that comes from our love for her, we know, but not nearly as much as she gives. She is just a joyful kid and we love her all the more for it. Alanna, well, she's only now becoming something more than a newborn, so we are just now beginning to discover who she is and what we'll love about her in time. The adventure, of course, is part of the fun.
Future hopes? As Liz noted, it's not for success and wealth (well, at least primarily it's not those things): we hope for strong faith, deep joy, and great love. Get those three, and everything else takes care of itself, as far as I'm concerned. I've seen no evidence to the contrary in my 34 years.
So, that's parenting in a nutshell for me. Comments? I welcome them. Thanks for reading.