There is a conversation happening at this very moment. It is a buzz. A hum. A soft murmur above the silence. I hear it between words, in soft breaks of dialogue, parent-to-parent.
It is the joy we can not put into words. It is the sound of our hearts breaking 1,000 times and recollecting again in a moment. It is the simultaneous exhaustion and elation we feel when we look at our kids.
It is tempting to talk about the hard stuff the most, to overlook the massive happiness parenting brings. For so long this was the narrative I heard about having kids. It was depressing–how kids ruin marriages and cause financial strain. But when I became a parent, I found it was incredibly underrated. Put simply, I enjoyed it far more than I thought I would.
For a few years I blogged at my personal url, www.deidrawrites.com. But after I had Ezra some new goals began to take shape for me. I wanted to redesign parenthood for myself and my friends. I wanted to encourage thoughtful parents, living with their convictions, struggling with the hard questions.
In my opinion, this is what it means to Parenting Upstream. But exactly how do we do that?
Well, it’s not easy.
We parent with conviction. Asking the hard questions.
We parent with perspective. Listening to other people’s stories and reflecting on our own victories and failures.
We parent without guilt and shame. Because really Christ is sufficient and his grace is always overflowing. Guilt and shame only cripple us.
We parent with grace. Towards our children and other parents in hopes that we too, can be recipients of grace.
We parent with gratitude. Do we really have time to complain? The days are long, but the years are short.
We parent in community. This means finding like-minded parents and building vulnerable relationships.
I think it’s going to take some work. Some conscious effort. Some long discussions. But I think the view is better upstream.
So let’s go. Let’s get in the boat together and go upstream because if we’re together I know we can get there.