The Hard Way


I am {probably} a child’s worst nightmare for a mother.

I have parental locks on all the channels with a higher than PG rating and PG is iffy these days.

I constantly check what they are watching on their tablets; YouTube is far too easy to find trouble.  Like, one innocently misspelled word away from T-R-O-U-B-L-E.

We have an open door policy when friends are over; meaning doors stay open {unless using the restroom of course}.

We have an alarm system with motion detectors; obviously we want to keep the bad guys out but let’s be real; at some point it will be to keep my teens and their hormones in.

They are not allowed to spend the night out at someone’s house just because they call them friend; momma really has to know the parents.

There will be no social media accounts until they are … haven’t decided yet; I just know that the time is not now.

Their business is my business until they are 18 and bettering themselves.   I love them fiercely and will vehemently protect them.  But, there is a lesson they must learn: there will be times where mom and dad will not save the day {gasp}.

There are more mornings than I care to acknowledge where my kids insist upon taking their treasures to school.  The answer is always the same.


But, they get sneaky and stash their goodies in their backpacks the second momma is not looking.  SPOILER ALERT: Momma caught on and now there are morning backpack checks.

Recently, my oldest 2 children decided to trade something of value for something worthless.  The exchange was with an older child who may or may not have understood the value of said items. However, to them, they traded something they didn’t want for something they wanted.  Kids were happy, ‘rents… not so much.  They inevitably were busted and lectured.

Lesson #1 kids: mom and dad will find out everything {insert evil laugh here}.

As parents we had two choices:

1. Get the goodies back.

2. Don’t.

Scenario 1 was tempting.  I wanted them to have what they traded.  It was a gift and it was perfect.  But, what will that teach them?  That they can make foolish decisions {they certainly will as we all do} and the consequences will not be theirs to consider.  Nope.  That is not real life.

Scenario 2 was challenging {as a parent}.  But, that’s where we landed.  They will work off the value of their trade with chores in an effort to help them understand that even though something seems free {like a gift}, someone had to work for it.  Nothing is free.

Being exploited occurs in all stages of life.  It can be found in relationships, workplaces and online.  People will withhold their love, affection and kindness in an effort to break your spirit and diminish your resolve.  They hope to sway your values or simply change your mind.  Their goal is for you to surrender your integrity for their benefit.

I have been entrusted to raise independent adults who have Jesus in their heart, kindness in their actions, softness in their words, and determination in their step.  They have to learn even if it is the hard way.

To my precious children:

I will be here every step of the way.  I will hold your hand, guide your step, and always have your back.  But, I will not always rescue you.  I will teach you how to navigate the waters, handle the consequences and learn from your mistakes.  I do this because my love for you is endless.

Today it is about toys, but one day it will be about something all consuming and heart wrenching.  I hope I have prepared you to have the grace to rise above and succeed in spite of it all.



2 thoughts on “The Hard Way

  1. Sarah, I love this so so much. Your words and writings speak to my soul. Wish I had the talent to get my words out so gracefully.
    Keep it up.


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