31 Days to Finding Freedom: {Day 13} Shape not Break


Yesterday I talked about the earth shattering discovery that my introverted temperament was, in fact, not a character flaw. Call me a late bloomer, but I’ve since learned that a number of my personality ‘issues’ aren’t actually issues at all. They are just the way that I’m woven together. I like the toilet seat down and all of the kitchen cabinet doors shut. I need to write in order to process my feelings. I have no physical coordination. I like watching fantasy films (Lord of the Rings anyone?). I do not have a competitive bone in my body. I hate board games, or as I like to call them ‘bored’ games.

As I began to find the freedom to know and love who I am, I began to feel a sense of fear that I would not be able to extend the same freedom to my children. I held very definite ideas about how I wanted them to behave, interact, excel. Remember that lovely little box I was living in? I wanted to make sure my children lived in lovely little boxes too, that is until I realized that no matter how hard I squished, pulled and prodded, they wouldn’t fit. One likes to be busy all.the.time. One is emotionally high maintenance (where did that come from?) One is a pessimist. They are who they are, and while I can shape them, I don’t want to break them. My children are not one size fits all, and neither are yours.

Have you found yourself raising an athlete when you wanted a scholar? A serious child when you wanted a silly one? A lover of mechanics instead of a lover of nature? Extend to them the hand of grace. They are still becoming, let them become who they are in a home where they can flourish in freedom not wither in weariness.

Do you struggle with letting your kids be themselves? What lovely little boxes have you kept them in?

This post is part of a 31 day series. I promise to return to my regularly irregular and non-cohesive posting in November. For my first 31 day post click here, for more 31 Day topics (and there are a LOT!) click here.

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  • I can so relate to this. I smiled at your mention of ‘bored’ games and not having a competitive bone in your body. My family is competitive, but I’m not and it’s one of the things I’ve always felt was a character flaw. You writing that just made me realize that actually.
    Also, I’m with you on the introverted temperament and feeling hugely freed by learning more about it.
    I’m just reading through some of the 31 Days series, I really like what you’re doing!

  • This was a great post. My little guy is only 6 months old, but I know I’ll struggle with this someday. Thanks for the encouragement!