Answer by Thomas Zerbarini:
I can't say it's rewarding for all. It is certainly rewarding for me.
I had no idea if I would be a good parent, it was a scary thought. It just happened in my heart for me when my first son was born that I wanted to be the best father and daddy. That feeling was more galvanized for each child thereafter.
I find that there are many things that are rewarding. For me I notice that if I show my children compassion, joy and love all the time their hearts and minds will blossom. I do my best to interact with my children constantly with love, respect, patience, discipline and structure. Emphasizing having fun and enjoying one another as much as possible. Now it's not perfect all the time and there will be a need for timeouts and sending them to their rooms.
What I have found is that my children are very happy, well adjusted, funny, playful, outgoing and most of all have a deep love for one another and for their parents. The joy and excitement I see on my kids faces when I walk in the room at school, come home from a trip or picking them up from camp is just one of the most heartwarming rewards of parenting.
There are so many "firsts" and ongoing rewards that are too many to put on paper. Here are just a few:
- Watching them sleep,
- Their first words and steps,
- Their first taste of a lemon,
- Their first day at school,
- The first time they hit a baseball,
- Their first friend,
- The first time they say they love you,
- the first deep hug you get,
- their first halloween costume,
- Their first Christmas when the realize what Santa does,
- Their first book they read,
- The first time they go down a slide or swing on a swing,
- The conversations you have with your kids as they get more and more of their own independent thoughts,
- And, so much more…
Simply, the Love in my children's eyes and the things they say is moving. The way they fight over who sits next to me at the dinner table and that they make me promise to give them a kiss goodbye while they are sleeping when I have to leave in the early in the morning for work is incredibly touching.
Thanks for the question, it is so nice to talk about and share these beautiful moments in my life with others.