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Parenting a Spirited Child - It takes a village

My big girl is a spirited child. She has more energy, more creativity, more spunk than anyone I've encountered before.
She entered this realm with eyes wide open and arms flailing. I *knew* she'd teach me a lot.
And she has! I've learned how to be more patient and more forgiving than I ever thought I would be able to be. She taught me true compassion and how to serve.
I'd be lying though, if I didn't admit I wish some times I didn't need to learn those lessons. It's hard work. It takes long hours and lots of energy I don't always feel I have. And I'm not always so willing to learn. And I don't always learn with grace.
There are plenty of days when I need to ask her forgiveness and compassion. Days when I snap at her. Days when I forget that she's still little and expect more of her than she's ready to learn or able to do. Days when I forget that she brings gifts as well as challenges.
I'm so thankful for the wise mothers I've encountered over the years through La Leche League and among the many natural parenting communities I've been a part of. Women who trust. Women who know their babies and their children. Women who are willing to learn from their children as well as teach their children. Women of faith - both in a higher power, their children, and themselves. These mentors have supported me and encouraged me. Many of them before I even knew I'd need that support.
You see, most of those lessons occured and most of that support was received long before the big girl came to me. I was learning and growing as a parent years earlier when my boy was a baby. Little did I know that I'd finally use that knowledge 13 years later when the big girl came to me.
Mamas, you don't know how your examples teach others. You have no idea what gifts you have to share with others. Your gifts of patience, love, compassion, charity, kindness, trust, and faith - all these can bless the lives of children and parents.
Continue to support and assist new mothers. Share your wisdom and your experience. Then, when those spirited children come to them they'll be up to the challenge!
Guest Post by Kari of Moo Said the Mama

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