Last Summer Esposa and I took Hijo to the park. He quickly found a group of kids playing and joined them. As we observed the play, it appeared to be some sort of hybrid game of tag and house. While I watched, I heard a girl yell out in an exasperated voice “I don’t want to be the mom!” Apparently the pressures of parenthood from the game were more than she wanted to handle. This, honestly, feels like a reflection of true parenthood at times.
The truth is parenthood is not always butterflies and rainbows in a meadow made of marshmallows. It can be really tough. Daily choosing into a relationship with a self-centered child challenges me. Sure, sometimes it’s easy to come home from a day of work and instantly jump into play or a tantrum or whatever happens to be happening at the moment. But often times that transition proves difficult. Not to even mention all the times in a day I intentionally make choices to give myself up in some shape or form and give preference to Hijo.
Honestly, I have it easy. Esposa carries the honor of staying home with Hijo full time. Sometimes I feel little bit of jealousy at this. However, when I actually think about it, I realize she has the much harder job. Always being the parent that is on can be tiring and wearing. I’m guessing in the moments when she faces yet another melt down in a long day, she sometimes want to scream, “I don’t want to be the mom!” Not because she doesn’t love Hijo – she does. But because constantly choosing to love well is a challenge and takes intentionality.
However, it is a good fight. Choosing love over and over is what a parent does. Choosing to love and pursue relationship is the fabric of parenthood. At least it’s what I want my parenthood to be. This also is what God does to me. I’m fickle and throw tantrums with Him. I’m moody and ignore Him. I’m not the easiest child to pursue. Yet God continually chooses to pursue me. That’s what our entire relationship is built on. He literally gave Himself up for me. To choose into relationship.
When Hijo is grown and reflects back on childhood, I want him to remember my own choices to pursue him. He may not remember the little struggles to brush teeth or clear the table (although those lessons will eventually stick as well), but he definitely will remember and know his daddy loves him.
Continue to choose to be the parent in the most loving, best way possible. It’s not always easy, but it will prove worth it to both you and your child.