Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Politics, Christianity & Children

Lewis and I tend to find ourselves somewhere in the middle in most political arguments. We tend to see both sides and then come down on the side that we can most agree with - if not fully agree with. We are constantly having conversation about different ideas - political or otherwise. Our home has always been filled with conversation. We talked about marriage, money and kids when we were dating. By the time we made the decision to get married, we had worked through all kinds of complicated ideas. Our pre-marriage counselor was actually really surprised at the discussions we had already had and the ones we had with him. Before having Isis, we talked and talked about the pros and cons, the way we wanted to handle pregnancy, the method we wanted to use for labor & delivery, the way we wanted to parent, the methods we wanted to use for scheduling, etc. We had countless conversations. It went on and on. We continue to talk about the ways we want to conduct things in our home on all levels.

When it comes to politics, religion, school, tattoos, clothing, moral choices, any other major opinions and decisions that may arise, we always want to maintain an atmosphere of conversation. In terms of religion, I sincerely believe that Christianity is strong enough for questions. I want to allow my children to ask those questions. We want to be able to present both sides of an argument, both sides of a decision. We want to allow freedom for our children to disagree with us - not in terms of discipline or harmful decisions - but definitely in terms of choosing a preference. We both have tattoos and like tattoos. Our children may follow along with that or they may choose not to get any. We both vote on political candidates based on the specific elections and the issues presented, not on the party the candidate is running under. When our children are of the age to listen and understand about politics, they may come to a different decision than we do and I will fully encourage their freedom to do so.

I want to create a climate where Lewis and I are not afraid to admit that we make mistakes and do the wrong thing sometimes. In all honesty, as a former child myself, your kids know what's going on. If something isn't right, I promise they KNOW. And it's more harmful than anything to pretend that they don't. I could already tell at the very beginning after Isis was born that she knew when something was wrong with me. When I was having baby blues really bad and would cry a lot sometimes when I was home alone with her, she could totally tell. Now, I can't provide concrete evidence of this, but she would look at me sometimes when I was crying and I just knew that she understood something was wrong. I can give countless examples of myself, Lewis and some of my friends who had things going on in their house while growing up and we knew something wasn't right. Of course, parents try to act like nothing is wrong or like they haven't made major mistakes, I guess they think they are protecting their kids. I tend to disagree. I believe that Lewis and I presenting ourselves as authentic people who make mistakes will allow our children to see that life is messy. People are not perfect. It isn't perfection that is important, it is learning from your mistakes and picking yourself back up and moving forward. I want my children to be able to make mistakes and not allow those mistakes to ruin their future. I want an atmosphere of humility, conversation, understanding and authenticity in my home.

Sorry for the rant. I wrote this other post on my Ingenue Perspective blog and it got me thinking about Isis and parenting in general.

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