“First forget inspiration. Habit is more dependable. Habit will sustain you whether you’re inspired or not. Habit will help you finish and polish your stories. Inspiration won’t. Habit is persistence in practice.”
― Octavia E. Butler, Bloodchild and Other Stories
Persistence is one thing my son does not lack in; he was born with a triple helping of it, but I still find myself encouraging to carry on when he hits a barrier – such as climbing up onto the bed on his own. As of last night, he also climbs up onto the lazy boy.
Teaching our kids to be persistent is not the only thing we need to be constant on. I believe our rules for our children need to be persistent and never changing. Full disclosure I grew up in two different households: One had concrete rules that I knew what I could and could not do, and the other was in constant flux. Thank God that the parent with the rules carved in stones was my guardian. Not that I love one any more than the other, but even as a wild child I knew when I had gotten myself into trouble, well be for that parent; whereas with the other parent, I could have done everything as I thought it should be and catch some sort of punishment.
It is not important that your kids agree with you on your rules, but rather, truly understand what they are. Unpredictable rage or punishment from a parent can set your child on a rough ride later in life. It is not a parent’s job to be their child’s buddy or friend, but rather, the cornerstone that steers them into the type of adult that the parent and others could enjoy being around; no one wants to be around a spoiled megalomaniac.
I believe the key to this is for both parents to sit down and agree on the rules for their children, rather separated or together. Both parents need to be in tune with each other, and back each other up, for the well-being of the child. Not having this can cause a child to play two parents off of each other and cause the child to have turmoil in their adulthood. I make thing disclaimer because I know there are a lot of split families and have seen some work better than others on their children.
Keep in mind, my beautiful wife and I are from two completely different cultures, but we both realize for our son’s best interests we need to agree on one set of rules for him, so he understands them and grows into a healthy man some day. Dave also has the fun of growing up with parents speaking two completely different languages to him. He is only a year old and speaks 4 words in mom’s language and 5 in dad’s. Our persistence has him speaking Russian to mom and English to dad. He also responds to guests in what language they address him in. On a side note, I also speak double talk to him from time to time, to give us a way to communicate later in life without others understanding.
Your child needs to persistent situations in life: #1 your rules, so they do not feel as if you are being unfair or changing your mind to be cruel to them, and you teaching them to keep trying until they get something right. Many of the most enjoyable things in life can be nightmarish to get a handle off. Do not set your child back by not teaching them to push through the tough times. Read to them, love them and do your best to help them become the best them they can be.