Saturday, July 16, 2011

Mama La Vida Lanka: What Kind of A Parent Will I Be?

I was introduced to by mymommyology and it has been such a useful and essential pregnancy and (for advance reading) parenting resource!  One of my favorite articles is Being an Anti-Perfectionist (How Kids Learn By Making Mistakes).  It struck the unanswered question in my mind: what kind of parent would I like to be?  Or even more terrifying, what kind of parent will I be? 

Check out!
The fear comes from my reflections of how I am with myself (control-freak, obsessed with performing, impatient – a classic Type 3 in the Enneagram).  And how I manage other people at work (high standards, high energy, not as control freak but still quite impatient).  I had the unconscious belief that people could be just like me and hopefully even better!  But I realized that is not the case and people have their own styles and paces which may be different but not necessarily “bad.”  During my farewell in my previous company where I stayed for most of my career, one of my direct-reports said something to the effect of I’ve pushed them really hard (yikes) but it was to the point that enabled him to realize how much more he was able to achieve (haay thank God for his awesome attitude!).  My other very good friend (who was my previous boss in the same company) also told me something to the effect that “naku, your child doesn’t know his/her whole life has already been planned ahead!”  Well, I have rough plans already - ok fine travel plans lang naman and what classes s/he will take like instruments, sports, etc.) – to which my husband just reacts with “My Wifey! Ano ka ba?”  Can you already see where we’re headed in the parenting realm here?         

At work that is acceptable – I am no The Devil Wears Prada – I am nice and even fun to work with (I think! I hope! Haha!) but we all have to pull our weights at work.  But at home, I think it has to be different.  I have stopped myself from nagging my husband to fix this and do that (again I think and I hope!).  Because I know at the end of the day he will anyways (even to a higher degree of performance than I!) plus I don’t want to add home pressures from the already demanding work he has.  Moreover in parenting – I think I really have to take a different approach. 

First because I want to teach my kids to think.  In as much I have my opinions and what not, I want them to decide for themselves – and I am hoping that the path they will take will be one that is grounded on the Catholic faith and sound principles and values.  Which I think will be our responsibility to instill but the rest is upto them. 

Second I also want my kids to learn how to handle the consequences of their actions and to learn from it.  I want to raise resilient kids – I think I will lose my mind if I try to shield them from everything bad.  However I want to teach them how to be strong amidst all.

Third I have this vision of myself as a “really cool mom.”  I don’t mean permissive, but cool.  You know, chillax.  I can already hear my brothers and my dad laughing their heads off with that.  Me? Chillax? Ha! A girl can dream! But honestly I want to be cool enough that my kids will be open to talk to me and my hubby without fear of being judged, misunderstood, and all the other angst of children (ok teenagers).

So how do I do that?  I guess I will not really know until the time comes but as I said during the start of this post that Being Anti-Perfectionist actually gave me a few pointers (hopefully I remember them when the time comes!) which basically would enable my kids to think, learn (and be resilient) and talk to us.

Click on the link to be directed to the full article. The piece was written by Alina Tugend, author of Better By Mistake: The Unexpected Benefits of Being Wrong.

Note: After 6 months and a dose of creative inspiration, I've changed the series title from Mommy Diaries to Mama La Vida Lanka :-) 


  1. Haha! My best friend made me read Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mom by Amy Chua. It doesn't directly answer your question above but I think as Asian moms we can relate a little bit more than we let on! ;)

  2. Haha! I know I read your post on it! I will check it out!

  3. I have so much to learn from the article. I am the poster child for it for sure. Thanks for sharing! I agree... Asian moms can totally relate. I know what I want to be later on as a mom, but I can already see how I'm being exactly like my lola and tita in a lot of ways! Ack.

  4. I know right? I am becoming so much like my mom it freaks me out sometimes! But I love my mom and I hope we're getting the best from our women role models! :-)


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