A Parent’s Learning Journey in Instilling Family Values in Children
One of the things I truly appreciate is when I see my older children help out in caring for Brie, the littlest one in the family.
Like, when I need to rush and get ready for work, the older ones help out and get Brie ready.
This can include, showering and toweling her dry.
I’d then simply need to prepare her clothes, and Brie would put them on herself.
When I have production shoots in the afternoon, the older ones would help babysit Brie.
Often, this means getting her to nap.
What they usually do : Push Brie in her pram. Sing songs to her. Brie then would fall asleep.
They’d read a book to her and let her fall asleep on their laps or shoulders.
I guess, what most people don’t quite see is the long and constant training process needed to nurture their brother-sister relationship.
Because it doesn’t happen overnight.
We’ve started instilling family values before a sibling is born in the family.
We’d share with the older ones how family is a gift from God, how we are to look after and help each other, etc.
But, having said that, even after the tens and thousands of words uttered by us, the reality is, it does NOT mean the kids are always nice, caring and loving towards each other.
Well, and I’m not surprised.
Because, they are naturally self-centred.
They too are sinners like us.
They have a natural tendency to put themselves, their interest, and their personal convenience as number one.
And to me, this is where we need to come in.
As their teacher, and their guide, their parents.
Totally NOT because we are holy and oh-so-perfect parents.
But because we are called and given this responsibility by God to be their guide and teacher.
To be a living example.
While we too keep on learning to be better persons ourselves every day.
Yes, I am learning so much from being a parent.
I learn what it means to have better self-control, even when I feel my head is about to ‘explode’.
I learn about patience and not giving up, even when the children’s behaviour is very far from what I’ve been teaching them.
I learn about putting others first, even at the expense of my own comfort and preference at times.
It’s not easy at all.
But it’s not impossible.
And I think, when we whole-heartedly carry out our calling, with God’s help, we all are gradually shaped to be better people, every day.
Not just the children, but also us parents.