This is the first of a series of entries on Parenting.

There are a few things I think are important to keep in mind when it comes to being a parent. The first thing to keep in mind is the knowledge that parenting is a Gift, a Holy Gift, if you will. Not everyone gets this privilege. Enjoy it and seek out help and wisdom when enjoyment is threatened. Because parenting is a gift, we are encouraged to look at each of our children as the one-of-a kind, unique individuals they are. Even “identical” twins are different. It’s our job as caregivers to children to help them grow into that uniqueness that is theirs alone.

When we are able to hold on to the privilege in parenting, we are more engaged in the process. When we are more engaged in the process, we raise healthier kids. Healthy kids are good for the environment in every way imaginable!

Something else to remember is all children are socially embedded. Meaning, they are born or adopted into a social system, usually that of a family. Families can be large or small or somewhere in the middle. The number of people in a child’s family is not as important as how they interact with each other and with others outside of the family. Inside their families, children choose a role to fill while they are very young. It does not change much as they grow. They refine their skills and learn by trial and error to find out what does and does not work. They watch the adults in their lives and figure out what they think life should be like for themselves and for others. Ideally, we give them good things to watch!

– Louella DeVries

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