5 Things Parenting Taught Me Never To Take For Granted

5 Things Parenting Taught Me Never To Take For Granted

Here are 5 things that parenting has taught me to never take for granted.  As always, I solicit your feedback in the comments section!

Time

When you are a parent, time seems to fly by so fast that you wonder where it went. It’s hard to remember when my older kids were babies and all of the little things that they did that were so cute.  That’s part of the reason I have this blog – to document and record a little bit of their lives as they are in the present.  Don’t take time with your kids for granted.  One day they may move away for college and start their own family.  I live 8 hours away from my parents. I can only imagine how they feel with their son in another state.

Perspective on what’s really important

Becoming a parent has put everything into perspective for me. The things that were important to me before becoming a parent probably didn’t even cross my mind beforehand. Now that I’m a parent of 4 kids, safety, security, shelter, financial needs, employment, and education are all at the top of my list.  You think more about protecting your house than you may have when you were a teenager.  I worry every day about whether or not I should install a security system.  With the way the world is today, chances are I’m going to do that.  But 10 years ago, I wouldn’t have thought twice about it. I didn’t worry about having a roof over my head when I was a kid. Both of my parents provided it for me and I always assumed I would have a place to call home.  Now that I’m a parent, I have to budget and plan for the mortgage payment, take care of maintenance issues, make repairs and try to keep things clean and orderly.   While I did have employment when I was younger, it was more about a little spending money from a part time job.  I had a $100 car payment but after that my parents paid for all of my other needs.  Today, my employment is a career, providing me with experience I need to advance, benefits for the family, and a financially-secure future.   Education has always been important, but has shifted gears from my education to my kids’ education. I help them read and work on their homework.   I am responsible now to make sure my kids have a proper education and the tools they need to succeed in life.  A school can only provide so much, but it’s the parents’ job to provide the foundation.

My Kids’ Health

There are so many underprivileged children in the world today. Some have physical and mental impairments while others are orphaned.  As a parent, I have learned to not take for granted that my kids are healthy and can do many things that other kids only wish they could do.  I try to put this into perspective when my kids complain about having to eat dinner or do routine chores or homework.  I explain that if they could only see how unfortunate some other kids have it they would understand that their lives are quite comfortable in comparison.

Opportunity to be a role model

I have learned never to take for granted that being a parent means having the opportunity to be a role model for our kids. Kids have access to other people (TV, music, sports, etc.) that really shouldn’t be a role model, but because their parents don’t take the time to be a positive role model, they turn to others to be the role model for them.  I have the opportunity now to instill the type of behavior I want them to imitate.   Whatever I do, my kids are watching me.

Importance of family

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We all need our family and we need to make time to visit and get to know our family members. My kids need their grandparents and see them every chance they get.  Unfortunately, all of my grandparents have since passed so my kids may not remember my grandmother (who was the only one alive when my kids were born). There are so many times I wish I could go back and get to know my grandfather better and to spend more time with my grandmother while I had the time.  We can’t turn back the clock so it’s up to us now to invest in creating valuable relationships with our families.  They are the only ones we know we will always be able to count on.

by

Hi, I'm Jeremy, the founder of Go Ask Your Daddy Blog. I'm a 30-something daddy to four kids ten and under, husband to a beautiful woman who is a special needs teacher, manager by day, and a typical sports-loving guy. I blog about my Catholic faith, experience in parenting, marriage, and our many travels as a family.

11 thoughts on “5 Things Parenting Taught Me Never To Take For Granted

  1. Family is “the” most important thing there is…and if you teach your children to value that above all else…then the rest will fall into place. I wish I could go back and spend more time with my grandparents and parents, now that they all are gone…you never get that time back. I write about this a lot.

  2. Everything is so true! Parenting just changes every single aspect of your life, all the way down to the little things. For example, when we got married, my husband and I lived a pretty easy carefree life. But since our oldest was born 18 years ago, my husband has never been able to sleep through the night. He wakes up at a random time, thinking he’s heard a strange noise. He worries about having to protect us. That’s were all the wrinkles and grey hair comes from!

    • Jeremy Atkins

      I wake up several times a night too but I think that’s normal to some extent being a parent. I would t have it any other way though!

  3. Kim

    I am so thankful to come home to my son everyday…when other things bother me, I know that when I come home I have a really great kid waiting for me

  4. A very good list. Its amazing how absolutely everything is looked at differently from a parenting perspective. Your whole life really does change. I think the other things that you suddenly begin to appreciate more are sleep and time to yourself. Both hard to come by once you’re a parent

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