Sunday, September 27, 2009

Parenting Tip #7 Joy Journal

When I was pregnant with my 6th child, I was excited, but apprehensive about what people would say. Sometimes they would be rude and say things like: "Are you trying to populate the whole world by yourself?" Or mutter, "Can you really afford to give that many children a decent life?" So I decided that if I wanted a big family, which I did, then I should be enjoying a big family and find joy in having and raising my children.

I decided to keep a Joy Journal. I would write down things that my children (and husband) did that brought me joy. Then on those days when "joy" was elusive, I could read my journal and be reminded of those better days. I kept a Joy Journal for all the years my children were growing up until they all moved away. Sometimes I wrote several times a week, and other times just once a month or I would forget for several months. But I kept at it. Then on each child's birthday, at our family birthday party with the grandparents, I would read several entries about that child that I had written that year and how he or she had brought me joy.

This has been a fun and rewarding tradition. It helped me LOOK for joyous things my children did and helped me focus on my love for them. I like to think that it helped them too.

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