Friday, March 8, 2013

With Flaws and All

I used to think I was the strangest person in the world but then I thought there are so many people in the world, there must be someone just like me who feels bizarre and flawed in the same ways I do. I would imagine her, and imagine that she must be out there thinking of me too. 
Well, I hope that if you are out there and read this and know that, yes, it’s true I’m here, and I’m just as strange as you. 
- Frida Kahlo

When you homeschool, you are with your children all of the time. You will be imperfect. Perfection is not only impossible. The striving for it is overrated. And a waste of perfectly good effort.

Instead, be what I like to think of as Good Enough:  

Try. Try hard.  
And be satisfied with the accomplishments 
and abilities of that effort.  
And tomorrow, try again using new information 
gleaned from yesterday.

My use of the phrase Good Enough Parent is different from the Neo-Freudian Object Relation Theorists of the early and middle parts of last century, though I did borrow the phrase from their work. Instead, I want we parents to allow ourselves the room to grow, to improve, to become more than we are today.

Parenting children is an ongoing School of Hard Knocks. We are imperfect. Our children are imperfect. But our love and our good intentions can be perfect in any given moment. We can do our best today, learn from each success and failure and need to change, and then be a different Good Enough Parent tomorrow. We are continually learning.

In fact, I became a much happier and better parent when I realized that I could apologize to my children. When I have made errors of judgment or intention, I can apologize to them by explaining my thought process and the moment when I realized I was wrong. And they get that. Hey know that, together, we are on this road of life.

Every parent needs to know this. So, take it from me, embrace your flaws! Embrace the flaws of your partner, your friends, your children, and yourself!
Because that is TRULY loving.

If you enjoyed this post you may also like: 

I will be hostessing the upcoming Carnival of Homeschooling on April 2nd.
PLEASE, to my readers and blogger friends, submit some great reading material for this homeschool carnival!
You can send it to me directly at:  karen.loethen Ampersand

1 comment:

  1. I ALWAYS enjoy reading your blog posts. I completely agree that being able to apologize to your child is a huge feeling of relief. Me and my 4yr old call it do-overs. We all get them and we all need them! When I get angry too quickly or overreact to something... do over. When she bursts into a fit at the sound of no... i give her a do over. We all react quickly without truly thinking about the situation, and to give ourselves a moment to correct those gut reactions is just awesome.



Leave a comment!