I am having a seriously emotional day. The tears have been free flowing. There hasn't been a day that's gone by since discovering gentle discipline that I haven't wished I'd discovered it sooner. It's just so hard starting fresh when half of your children are already teens. I want so badly to NOT be punitive that I find myself struggling to not be passive. I feel as though I spend so much time researching what gentle discipline is *supposed* to be yet I have no idea how to put it into action. I know it's going to take time, it's been less than 6 months since giving up punitive measures. I'm so not a patient person. When I want something, I want it NOW!!
I'm feeling like such a failure as a parent. What if it's too late to make a difference? I want all of my children to have the same opportunities and to feel equally loved. I'm grateful to be starting early (still not early enough) with my 2 youngest, but feel so bad for my big boys. I have so much love in my heart for my family and all I want is the best for them. I've tried explaining the changes and that punishments are no longer on the table. My boys are very intelligent and have such amazing hearts but I don't think they *trust* this change. How horrible am I that my children don't believe that I am willing and truly desire to change because of my love for them? How do I assure them that this change is real and help them achieve the desired goals of gentle discipline? To me, those goals are to love themselves and others as Christ has loved us. I want to help them to make the right decisions because deep down they know they are right, not because they don't want to be caught. I want them to take the feelings of others into consideration in the decision making process. I want them to be honest with their own feelings, especially to themselves. They should know that it's ok to be mad, frustrated, disappointed, or to merely have a different opinion than others.
I sound so whiny. Me, me, me, I, I, I...*sigh* The enemy knows when to attack, doesn't he? This time will pass and I know I will eventually find my stride, but I sure wish it were sooner rather than later.
Lord, protect my heart. Guide me to make the right decisions for myself & my children. Help me to correct past mistakes and help me to forgive myself as You have forgiven me. Amen.