Family, Self-Help, Uncategorized

Parenting When Everything Goes Wrong – Free Parenting Assessment!

I had a different blog planned for today. But after my day yesterday, I had to adjust and write a new one.

Parenting is hard when your day is planned out. Parenting is especially hard when nothing goes according to that plan.

Yesterday, we had to go to the city (1.18 hours away) for a dentist appointment. It was a very early appointment, which meant driving through rush hour. So, of course, even though we left 8 minutes ahead of schedule (unheard of for us!), we were 20 minutes late. SO stress was there already.

We dropped my husband off at his appointment, and I looked at my schedule.

Dentist appointment at 7

  • Take kids to Chick-fil-A to play and eat a glorious breakfast while Daddy is in surgery
  • Pick dad up at 9:30
  • Head to hair appointments for the whole family at 10

Ok, I can do this. We’re 25 min off schedule now, and it takes 20 minutes to get to Chick-fil-A – but it’s worth it, and I promised my kids. SO… ok momma, make this happen.

For the kids! 

I get to Chick-fil-A. Check!

I go to grab my wallet………which is at home.

(face to palm)

Ok think fast. You have no wallet, and you’re driving illegally now. Well, you can’t do anything about that except stick to the rules of driving, which you are already supposed to be doing. Ok, so your husband has his wallet with him. Drive back, and you’ll have to forgo Chick-fil-A now and settle for McDonalds, which still is fun for the kids.

Ok. For the kids!


Ok, you now only have an hour to be with the kids and eat by the time I get there.

Still ok. Kids are fine, hungry and crying now, but you can do this.

Just. Get. To. Your. Destination.

Kids. Check! Wallet. Check! Onwards to McDonalds!

GPS malfunctions. Ok. I take a guess. I’m pretty sure it’s this way.

(coughing in the background – followed by a retching noise)

…oh no…

My son has now thrown up 3 times. He has not eaten all morning, and is now car sick because of the lack of food in his tummy……

Its ok, he’s still in his pj’s and you have a spare change of clothes.

But McDonalds is no longer an option, because let’s face it, that would make anyone vomit after vomiting.

I see a coffee shop. Great – they’ll have healthy options, and that’s exactly what this kiddo needs now, no matter how expensive it is.

For the kids! 

I sit down and buy everything on the menu that the kids might enjoy in order to make up for the lack of play place, throw up, and being forced to wake up at the crack of dawn.

And I take a deep breath of relief. Maybe God was simply trying to help me avoid all the calories. And maybe this was just to prove that you can overcome the stress for a greater cause. Your kids.

A couple months ago, Focus on the Family released a Parenting Assessment. Always insecure and looking to better myself, I took it and waited for the dreaded results.

The 7 Traits of Effective Parenting were:

  •         Love
  •         Respect
  •         Boundaries
  •         Grace and Forgiveness
  •         Gratitude
  •         Adaptability
  •         Intentionality

I did better than I thought I would. But two things were pretty low on the scale – Adaptability, and Grace & Forgiveness.

Ouch. Aren’t those the two most important traits of effective parenting?

I started praying right then that God would work on my heart and force me to be more adaptable and show more grace and forgiveness to my children.

I’m not saying it happened right away. But I kept praying, and it was on my heart all throughout the Christmas season, up to today.

I like to think that this assessment brought awareness to my life and helped me keep calm yesterday and not lash out at my children…or husband.

The Bible says in 2 Corinthians 13:5 to,

“ Examine yourselves to see if your faith is genuine. Test yourselves. Surely you know that Jesus Christ is among you; if not, you have failed the test of genuine faith.”

The Focus on the Family Parenting Assessment helped me examine myself to see if I really had faith in God to get me through the tough parenting days.

There is a lot of Grace in parenting. It’s impossible to be a perfect parent, but if you allow it, Parenting with God’s help will sanctify you. I believe that is why we are called to cleave to our husbands and multiply – because parenting forces you to care for others, when your whole life had been focused on yourself. Children are our mirrors to our dysfunctions, and less-than-perfect upbringings.

I realize that I am not perfect – but that won’t stop me from trying to reach the perfect standard that Jesus has put before us.

I’m in the business of moving mountains. And those mountains, right now, are tiny, forces-of-nature to be reckoned with, which bear my genes and issues. And I love them.

I could have flipped out in the car. Burst into tears. Yelled at my son for throwing up and making everything more stressful. I could have cursed at the cars for not moving. And believe me, all of it was on the tip of my tongue. But everything I do, my children see. And will mimic.

And we are called for higher purposes. We were created to do better things. To be daily, living sacrifices.

Take the Parenting Assessment today – even if you don’t have children. Maybe apply your husband to the children’s roles 😉

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4 thoughts on “Parenting When Everything Goes Wrong – Free Parenting Assessment!

    1. thank you. I feel like my life would be filled with so much more peace if I just learned to take a chill pill. Stick to whats important, but just not stress out so much about it.

  1. Adaptability was low for me too. I think this carries over into other areas of my life like not being a good traveler, which tends to show it’s negative side as complaining. Ugh always something in my character that needs work. “Lord Change me at the character level” is my prayer. Thanks for sharing, Meredith. We all have days like that but each day is a fresh start with no mistakes in it.

    1. That’s actually very encouraging to hear. I admire you so much and you’re like the sweetest person I know and raised such wonderful children. Praise for Grace

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