Today our sweet Rebekah Anne returned home from a week at Quaker Lake Camp. This is the sweetest camp. And the red head needs a sweet camp. She has a very tender heart. And at nine years old, I want her heart to be as tender on the outside as it is on the inside. This is a primary goal of our parenting. We want them strong and willing to withstand the attacks of the world, but we want them to remember they are as human as the person against whom they are defending themselves. Everyone has a fight to fight.
As Rebekah Anne is the third and now entering that sensitive phase called “tweendom,” protecting her heart is becoming more and more significant. Children, from my experience, are naturally tender. They are hardened by their experiences in our home as much as those away from our home. How can I continue to guide her while we are home together? From what well do I drink and share?
This article was shared by a Canadian friend, Karen, on facebook this morning. It was very timely for me. As Rebekah Anne returns, as Kelly Mae grows, and Reade is wetting his feet in teenagehood, and as I meet these new roles while still nurturing my “little” kids Sawyer and Laura Lea, from what well will I draw wisdom? The article is a sweet reminder of where.
“awesomeness!” was my first response as I began the process of sharing this on facebook. Then I realized I wanted a larger audience for this sharing.
Regardless of the faith walk, kids NEED their parents focused on THEM. AT ALL AGES. Parenting tweens and teens is more demanding and requires more hands-on than parenting toddlers.
This is not the time to abandon them to the world at large as if they are adults in body and mind and heart. They are not.
I will keep them close. Their hearts, that is. Their little legs will still peddle up into the neighborhood alone and out of sight. Their huge paws will still play golf and be gone and unheard from for hours. And they’ll keep going to camp.
Of course, I’ve only been the parent of a teen for 5 days. But you know what I’m saying.