Passionate About Cincinnati
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5 Ways Forgiveness Helped Me Be A Better Parent

We all know what it’s like to be ticked off at someone. It could be a family member, a co-worker, a friend or the cashier at the grocery store. It could be something small, or something huge. You could hold a grudge forever. Someone could have also hurt you so deeply, the scar still bleeds today. I know what it’s like, because I’ve been there. Some people can do or say some terrible things. Forgiving can be SO hard. But, Moms, I urge you to Let it Go (yes, like Elsa…we all know Frozen); you are better off.

Here’s how forgiveness has made me a better parent:

  1. It freed my heart of burden.  It hurts. I know. The thing they did/said can be so destructive. It can make you depressed, anxious, angry and affect your entire day. It can burden you for weeks, months or even years.  Think of how much better you could feel if you let it go. Pray. That’s what I do. I leave it with God, because he’s in control of it all anyway.
  2. It’s healthy.  If I’m healthy, she’s healthy.  Think of it this way. You are running late (which for myself, is about every morning with my 4 year old). Frantically, you are running around gathering clothes, lunches, car keys, shoes…etc. Speaking of which, why are my daughters shoes always on opposite ends of the house?! Anyway. Your mind is in disarray. As you drive to your destination, someone cuts you off. You say some not so nice words, or give them a #1 sign. Does any of this do you any good? No. It doesn’t. If you start the day off with a positive attitude, it makes a huge difference.
  3. It does more hurt to you, then it does to them.  The person who said or did that thing is probably not even thinking about it. You, however, are obsessing over it. You wonder if you could have done something different. You wonder why they did that to you, and treat other people so differently. It’s not fair. No, its not, but – you beat yourself up mentally. Moms, it’s not worth it! It’s not worth any of that at all.
  4. It makes even the little moments more meaningful. Have you ever been with your family, but your mind is somewhere else? I’ve been there. I’ve been playing with my daughter Ellie, and not been mentally present – because my mind is elsewhere.  I usually don’t notice this until after the day is over and the moment is long gone.  I feel so guilty about it afterwards. Let that thing GO, so you can enjoy those moments with your children. They grow up so fast! Laugh, have fun. It’s what life is all about!
  5. It’s an amazing example for my daughter. We all want our children to live a life that is carefree and happy. Bad things ARE going to happen. People will say hurtful things. It’s life. But, we can choose how to react to those situations. If we show grace and compassion in these situations, our children will do the same (we hope). If we are anxious, angry or depressed, those feelings can transfer onto our kids.

I’m a better parent when I’m present, and my mind is focused on her. I’m not saying I’m perfect, but I’m trying. If I find myself getting off track, I pray and turn to God. My Pastor recently said in a sermon, “Holding onto anger is like drinking poison, and expecting the other person to die.” It’s true. I cannot drink poison and be a good parent. It’s impossible.

On a lighter note:  Let it go! Let gooooooooooo!!

You now have the song in your head, you’re welcome!

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