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I got some great responses, mostly having to do with making choices that work for you and your family and filtering out the advice of well-meaning family, friends, and “experts” who might not have a clear understanding (or any understanding at all) of your situation.
Folks in the mindfulness world like to point out that we are “human beings” not “human doings” and that we function at our best when we find time to just be.
I got caught up in the idea that being a good Mom meant constantly doing—doing things with my girls or for my girls or solving whatever problem they might face.
There’s certainly nothing wrong with taking care of my children, my family, and my home, and by doing so I am making a choice to spend time on the things that are most important to me. I can’t control how my children will experience the world, what will happen to them, or who they will become. Every once in a while there is a break in my anxiety, and in that moment I can feel the peace and space that comes with loosening my grip just a little. In the moments of stillness, I remember that the only thing I can control is my approach to the present moment. When I shut up and pray, I remember that so much of what worries me is relatively minor in the grand scheme of things. Last updated: 25 Jul 2013Views expressed are those solely of the writer and have not been reviewed. Sandy Seton-Browne: The real problem for me seems to be where e choose to place our attention.

Whether it's a crying baby or a rebellious teenager, every parent has moments with their kids that they wish they'd been better prepared to handle-if only they'd known.This book, published in conjunction with Focus on the Family, shares heartwarming and vulnerable experiences from well-known moms and dads. Jim Daly is president of Focus on the Family and host of its National Radio Hall of Fame-honored daily broadcast, heard by more than 2.9 million listeners a week on more than 1,000 radio stations across the US. There is no question that it is excellent advice, but I’ve often had a hard time implementing it. How else would I demonstrate my love for them, assuage my anxiety, and prove to myself and everyone else that I actually am a good mother?
I can’t control what they will want out of life, where they will find meaning, how they will spend their time, and who they will love. Each time I am able to stop moving and stop doing and just shut up and pray, I am able to remember that I don’t have, and will never have, control over the future.
Will I dig my heels in even deeper, determined to do everything and fix everything (a path that inevitably leads to frustration) or will I slow down, breathe, notice, and accept what life throws my way? Enabling JavaScript in your browser will allow you to experience all the features of our site. Their surprising, sometimes humours, and always relatable stories of raising kids-and their warm accounts of the advice that got them through-will put your heart at ease as you learn to embrace one of life's most important assignments: parenthood. I’m an anxious person by nature, and I feel plagued by self-doubt and worry as I try to navigate the choppy waters of parenting.

When my girls were infants, I felt compelled to talk or read to them almost constantly in order to build their verbal skills and literacy. But it’s all too easy for me to get caught up in an exhausting cycle of constant-motion parenting, and each time I do that I lose sight of a fundamentally important truth of parenting. Whenever it pops up, all I want to do is hide behind my to-do list or in the pages of the latest parenting book. I am more likely to be open to whatever my children have to offer, from smiles to tantrums. I spent their naptimes or quiet playtime cleaning or cooking or researching Mommy and Me classes and preschool programs. To think that I can do everything to the absolute best of my parenting abilities and my children will still experience pain and heartache and loss is almost intolerable to me. When I wasn’t prepping or planning, I was reading the latest research and advice on whatever parenting problem I was struggling with, from breast-feeding and potty training to tantrums and picky eating.

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