A Barrel of Trust
A Bushel of Patience
A Gallon of Faith
A Liter of Understanding
A Quart of Respect
A Pint of Humor
Combine all ingredients. Blend with consistency; Stir well to form a ball of love.
Sift out jealousies, guilt, resentments, anger and frustrations.
Pour in Encouragement; Soften with decency;
Shape into equal parts of caring, humility, inspiration and communication;
Place in lightly coated heartfelt holder;
Sprinkle with fondness and affection.
Bake in a high degree of common sense until bubbles of positive parenting form.
Serves a loving family. Preserved for life.
Whether we can cook or not, the above recipe will prepare us to empower our children to look for the best within themselves; to experience their self-worth; to envision their future; to never have to say ‘if only’. Even if we aren’t equipped with all the ingredients all the time, they have an eternal shelf life we can tap into as needed. It’s up to us to keep our pantry well stocked.
Our children(the benefactors of our recipe), in turn, have a right to: be loved unconditionally; cry when they are hurt; be considered disciples; be given choices; be treated with firmness and consistency; be a part of family decisions; not be evaluated or judged; be respected; be taught how to behave; be allowed to make mistakes; be treated fairly; accept responsibility; be spoken to-not talked at; separate wants from needs; be held accountable; understand limits imposed by family values and, finally, speak to others as they would speak to themselves.
My first hand experience in dealing with problematic children has re-enforced the importance of effective communication. Even the worst case scenario proves that communicating and disciplining the behavior rather than the child results in the child accepting responsibility for their behavior while trusting us to help them recognize their own emotional intelligence. Bon Apetite!