This is not a blog post about how to raise boys, because let's be real, I really don't know what I am doing all that much. This is simply a space for me to encourage and help equip those that DO have boys out there!
The older that my sons get, the more overwhelmed I get by the fact that these kiddos will one day be out in the world. Out there making their own decisions, running their own life, and paying for their own bills. (come on somebody!)
I have three sons. As I write this, they are 9, 7 and 4 years old. And they are all "boy".... Aggressive, dirty, wild, adventurous, all of it. And quite frankly, I love it so much. Having boys is such a joy and thrill for me! I am amazed at the opportunity to raise up boys that will one day be men. Well, at least I hope they become men one day(!)
As I fast forward 10+ years to when my oldest is heading off to college, here are the three things I desperately want my boys to know from me...
- Don't be scared of emotions, but embrace them. Being a real man will require you to have them. Having emotions does not equal weakness.
- Be a leader by serving others!
- I am proud of you. Regardless of your performance or what you do... I will always be proud of you.
1 - Emotions are not a sign of weakness.
I really wish someone would have shown me the emotions wheel when I was younger. It would have helped me a lot. We have incorporated this into our parenting to try and help our boys actually put words/emotions to the things they are feeling. It's complicated and difficult, but it helps engage their hearts.
2 - Leaders Serve Others.
Serving others (and loving others) is absolutely key to being a leader. We all want our kids to grow up and be leaders - in whatever role and capacity that may look! I believe the best leaders are those who serve others.
3 - "I am proud of you"
All boys want to know one thing - "Am I enough?" That question is something boys, teenagers, even men wrestle with. More than anything I want my boys to know that I am proud of them regardless of how they perform. It doesn't matter to me if they are first place or last place, it does not change how I feel about them. Their performance does not define their value and worth to me! I love you regardless of what you do.
Parenting is tough. No doubt about it! But, it's worth it. If you have kids, grandkids, nephews, nieces, whatever it may be; may you be encouraged to give it your all. Let's raise up modern day leaders!
What would you add to the list of "things I want my boys to know?" We'd love to hear from you!