The Kind of Parent I Want to Be

They say that when you start a blog, it can evolve in such a way that the end result may often be nothing like what you initially intended it to be.  For some time now I have felt this blog evolving, although to what I wasn’t quite sure. I started this blog shortly after I found out I was pregnant. I initially wrote about the pregnancy under Getting Hitched. Then I decided to start a new blog because I felt having a baby was the start of the next chapter in my life and I wanted a dedicated blog to mark the milestones of my baby and life as a new Mom.

I am the youngest in my family so I’ve never had any younger sibblings to look after. When I discovered I was pregnant I realised how poorly qualified I was for this new job that was headed my way at the speed of a bullet train. Being a first-time Mom, everyone around me was eager to offer their two cents worth of advice on how to raise my baby. Some advice was good and some were not so good. Since I didn’t know any better, the only way I could weed out the not so good advice was by becoming a text book Mom.

As all parents and babies are unique individuals, not everything in a text book necessarily applies.  I had to sort through what worked and what didn’t for both Gavin and me.  Despite giving myself the label of being a text book Mom that didn’t mean I had closed myself to the “hand-me-down” advice from others.  On the contrary, I listened critically and evaluated the advice.  Babylicious then became an outlet for me to express what worked and what didn’t for Gavin and me.

I began my journey through motherhood aspiring to be a “good” mother, although what exactly defined a “good” mother, I wasn’t entirely sure.  Then something happened a few days back.  It was not a pleasant event so I won’t go into details.  Suffice to say that someone lost his temper over a fairly minor incident that should have been taken in stride.  As a result, it ruined what should have been a delightful and memorable evening.

Despite the unpleasantness of the evening, it helped to get the cogwheels moving.  What I wanted to achieve as a mother began to crystalise within my mind.  Having a short temper has been a negative trait that plagues both hubby and me – it runs in our families so much so that you would almost think it was genetic.  If the tendency to have a short fuse is genetic, then Gavin is pretty much a walking time bomb.

As a parent, I could accept that my son would easily blow up over minor incidences or I could try to teach him how to manage his temper. After the events of that ruined evening, I knew what I had decided.

A short temper is just one example, although I think the example helps to articulate what I mean. We are all flawed with negative traits – it is a normal part of being human.  How we deal with such negative traits can be influenced by how we were raised and the experiences we had while growing up.  Some of us learn to be the master of our negative traits, while others end up being enslaved by them.

How do parents influence, teach, and shape their children so that they grow up being people who are masters of their negative traits?  To take it a step further, how does a parent raise a child to become a happy, confident and successful person?

This is what I hope to learn as I continue my journey of motherhood through this blog – to be the kind of parent who is able to inspire my children to reach their fullest potential and to be the best that they can be.  I want to be the kind of parent that helps my children to grow up to be individuals who possess the qualities I have listed in my “About” page.

I welcome you to join me on my journey.  Feel free to share your experiences and your thoughts.  You are welcome to rebut what I write and present your own methods.  I believe that if we all work towards the goal of raising “better” people, we might just make our corner of the world a better place to live.

Read Part 2 – The Story of Babylicious

Published by Shen-Li

SHEN-LI LEE is the author of “Brainchild: Secrets to Unlocking Your Child’s Potential”. She is also the founder of Figur8.net (a website on parenting, education, child development) and RightBrainChild.com (a website on Right Brain Education, cognitive development, and maximising potentials). In her spare time, she blogs on Forty, Fit & Fed, and Back to Basics.

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