I found this when I was organizing the files on my computer the other day. It's a poem I wrote for Wesley's parents last Christmas, right after he was born. Some of you may enjoy it. I enjoyed rereading it now that he's a big boy.
Lord, help us to be good parents to our child.
Lord, help us to be loving to our child.
Help us remember to kiss him and hug him all the time and to remember there are never too many kisses and hugs. Help us to always use kind words to him, even when he has smeared peanut butter all over the kitchen and unrolled the entire roll of toilet paper and put all mom’s jewelry on the dog. And when we forget to use kind words, help us to hug and kiss him later because a disciplined child becomes a conscientious adult.
Lord, help us to be involved parents to our child.
Help us to take him to zoos and museums, to the park to feed the ducks, to the beach to play in the waves, to spend time with his friends and family, to spend time as a family just watching tv or playing games, because this will provide him with the sense of security only a well-loved child will have.
Lord, help us to keep our child close to his family.
Help us to take him to visit all his grandparents and the rest of his extended family, who love him so much, because a child with a firm grounding in family will make wiser choices later in his life.
Lord, help us to encourage creativity in our child.
Help us to remember he needs paper and paints, colored pencils and crayons, clay, wooden blocks, tools and things to build, create and design with and not just plastic toys that run on batteries, because children who are creative and imaginative grow up to be free thinkers.
Lord, help us to encourage our child to be healthy and athletic.
Help us to feed him healthy food and encourage him to try every kind of food. Help us remember he needs time to run and play outside with freedom and does not need to be involved in so many organized activities that he has no time to just play. Help us to get him involved in sports, attend practices and games and budget money for sports equipment and supplies. And help us encourage him and make him feel supported in anything he tries, even if he is not athletic and is unhappy that he can’t play a game well because a child who is encouraged even when he fails will learn to try again his whole life.
Lord, help us to encourage our child to have friends.
Help us to organize birthday parties and un-birthday parties, attend parties for his friends, arrange play dates, let him visit other friends and have friends over to our house. Help us have the stamina to stay up late when he has friends over to spend the night and the patience to play board games with them which are boring us senseless, because having friends helps a child learn the satisfaction of sharing.
Lord, help us to be good partners to each other.
Help us to remember that we will have a healthy, happy and loved child if we devote time to each other, spend time together without our child and show him that we love each other. Help us not to feel guilty when we occasionally put ourselves first, because a child with happy parents is a happy child.
Lord, help us to be perfect parents.
And when we are not perfect parents (because nobody is), help to support each other, to give each other a break from caring for our child, to not feel guilty that we are not doing the things other parents might do, that we are not spending as much time with our child as we would like or that we can’t provide every single thing tv or his friends think he should have – help us remember that love is really, truly the only thing he needs. And help us give him plenty of that.