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This parenting lark isn’t easy. Perhaps that’s obvious to other people, but I must confess to being slightly naive going in. Don’t get me wrong I didn’t think we would be perfect parents from day one but I thought our extra preparation time combined with the ‘You’ll be great parents’ platitudes would hold us in good stead. I think about one day was enough to disperse these foolish notions.

You see I thought the old discipline issue would be something I was good at, staying calm and delivering my lines with aplomb. But children do know how to push buttons. I should have known, mere days before we adopted Little Welford, my nephew, after having spent an afternoon being spoiled by me, got annoyed and told me I wasn’t going to be a very good daddy! In short children know how to hurt, and I don’t yet know how to react to it! Oh I start calm but then the button gets pushed and before I know it I’m shouting or getting het up.

I was reflecting on this while walking to church this morning when the song ‘Another Love’ came on my iPod. The song is about (I think) a fella who can’t fully commit to his current squeeze as he has essentially spent all his love on his last love. It got me thinking about my love for Little Welford. I mean I’ve always assumed love is a kind of infinite well I can draw on which is all very fine and good, but to keep topped up I need to keep going back to the source, something which currently is a struggle.

Yes I have to confess that my spiritual life is a little dry at the moment. I’m still reading the Bible regularly but perhaps in a too hasty fashion. I’m tired all the time as our little man settles in (and probably from now until he’s 18 if other people are to be believed) and so concentration and focus often prove elusive. Thankfully Jesus knew the human condition well and has me covered:

Matthew 11:28-30 ‘‘Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.’’

If love is going to win, if I am going to do Little Welford and Anna justice, I need to start at the beginning, the alpha, and let all things flow from that.