Re-post: A Mama’s Journey

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This was originally published June of 2011. I've also included an excerpt from a post I wrote the year before that. Words can't fully explain how life-changing it was for me to begin to see my children as people, not sinful rebellious little beings I must force into compliance. Recognizing that how I was parenting was wrong, forced me to acknowledge that how I was parented had harmed me. My desire to parent my children gently, was the fuel that pushed me to get into counseling and get help for the first time. It's hard to believe it's been 5 years since I began the journey of Gentle Parenting.  I recently found an old list of “important goals” that I wanted to achieve in parenting. … [Read more...]

Re-Post: Rights of a Child

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This post was originally published August 2011. It was part of my reaction to Michael Farris' creating a "parent's rights" amendment and proposing to amend our constitution. It was a big realization for me that the parent is not sacred, that they do not always know what is best for their child, and sometimes they need help. It helped me to take a step toward freedom from the weight of my parents expectations of me, and also help me be less afraid of acknowledging my own shortcomings as a parent, and be less afraid to get help and learn more. Several months ago, my mom was spouting off against the government and Child Protective Services in a phone conversation, saying that they should never … [Read more...]

Breaking the Silence

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Cynthia Jeub telling her story brings up a lot for me. Memories. Memories of hiding in small dark places with my hands clamped firmly over my ears to try to block out the screams of a sibling who was being "disciplined." Being isolated, and truly having no one to tell, no one to turn to for help. Memories of fear and shame and rage. Nightmares. Dreams where it all happens over again. That sick feeling in my stomach over not being able to help, change the circumstances, sick from fear. Heart racing, waking up in a sweat. Waking up and still feeling tired after long night. Regret. That I didn't say something then. That I didn't know what was happening to me and my siblings was abusive. … [Read more...]

Motherhood: Same and Different

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She is seven this month. My heart aches when I think about it. The baby that made me a mother. The first labor, hours of breathing and focusing and stretching until she barreled out of me and peacefully looked into my eyes without even crying.In many ways, I felt so sure of myself then. I had this routine down. I had been changing diapers and doing laundry and bathing babies for as long as I could remember. I nursed her, took her to the grocery store with me, rocked her and sang to her.And I made her sleep by herself in her crib, let her cry herself to sleep, and smacked her hand or her leg when she didn’t listen. It hurts to remember that.She is seven now. Who I am as a person a … [Read more...]

Spanking and Unconditional Love

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I wrote in several of my childhood journals that I would never spank my kids. The shame and frustration I had experienced was enough to convince me it was ineffective and harmful. But somehow by the time I was an adult I had changed my position again. Part of my reason was the major denial of any issues in my childhood. I felt like acknowledging painful things from my past would be a betrayal of my parents, and I loved them and wanted to be loyal to them. So I continued to pretend that nothing had ever been wrong, and tried to prove that to myself.  I was also a very conservative Christian, and every parenting book I read was written from that punitive perspective. One of them was “To Train u … [Read more...]

Another Day in the Life…

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 I get home from my job at midnight. After being on my feet for 7 hours, it felt really good to sit in the car for the short ride home and I stumble a little on the way to the kitchen door.  Mr. Punk is asleep on the living room floor with his little butt in the air, face smashed into his favorite soft blanket. I plunk into a chair and peel off my boots.  Haley gives me a mug of orange juice with pulp (my favorite) and we sit down to eat a snack together.  We talk softly about how my shift went; I made cereal bars and cookie dough and lasagna and had some fun conversations with my co-worker. We laugh when I realize that this is basically the first social interaction I’ve ever had other than c … [Read more...]


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