I must say... I have GROWN! Grown into standing up for how I parent my children and care for my husband. "My way" is not always conventional or traditional. I have gone to bat for that! I have wanted to quit and do what everyone else is doing. Just completely tired of explaining myself. I don't feel the need to anymore! IT FEELS AWESOME. I know that people are they way they are, they aren't going to change...the same way I'm not going to change. I can resist that and "take my toys from the sand box"....or I can embrace them where they are. I'm not giving them control over me, because I can see it that way. Grace. Tolerance. Love.
I don't advocate being a doormat. I advocate understanding why someone behaves the way they do. Not saying that negative behavior is ok, but understanding it. We can only control our actions. I encourage Moms to ALWAYS go with THEIR gut. This is THEIR journey. There are times when we "smile & nod" at unsolicited advice. We don't always throw the baby out with the bathwater when someone close to us doesn't behave the way we see fit. If we did, we would be awfully lonely.
What if we changed our perspective when we find ourselves in uncomfortable, hair standing on end situations with those we love? Asking ourselves ~ what can I learn here? How can I communicate my desires with effectiveness & dignity? Remembering that, sometimes, unsolicited advice is given from a place of love and truly wanting to help us avoid negative outcomes.
Most likely, we will have negative outcomes from choices we make about how we parent our children. Life isn't about being perfect. Rather, learning how to navigate the imperfectness of it all, on our own terms.
It is possible. It will take practice. That is the beauty of relationships. We don't give up on each other. We take the time to lovingly, gently set boundaries. Voice our feelings.
So, take a deep breath this holiday season. Love & learn. Grow.
A great teacher in India said "If you think you're spiritual and evolved and enlightened, go home for Christmas and see how it goes."