Parenting is an incredibly important responsibility and so we wanted to get a conversation going with input from parents in the community.  We asked them: what is the most important thing you’ve done as a parent?  We’ve highlighted some of the responses below.

Maria Brophy | Best Selling Author, Art Business Coach and Art Gallery Owner

Teaching my son to think for himself, rather than think what everyone else does. If something doesn’t seem right or true to him, to question it. Question everything, even me. Read more>>

Tori Marie | San Diego Mom and Fitness Influencer

I am a single mother, and I work very hard to provide for my son. However, I know quality time with him is so valuable. I use most of my free time to spend time with my son. We love doing day trips and adventures together on weekends. I believe my work ethic is a good example for my son, as well as the balance I create between work and family time. My son will always know he is my #1. Read more>>

Daphne Gaghagen | Marketing Manager, Writer, and Mom

This is a very big one for me; I’m referring to the way that I have taught my children about health and their physical identity. As a plus-size woman who has battled a long-term eating disorder, I wanted to be sure that my kids always had the tools to feel good in their own bodies. We talk about food in terms of nourishment and energy, not in terms of health and “eating your veggies.” We discuss the broad range of shapes and sizes in the world and how everyone deserves respect as human beings. When our bellies grow round after a good meal, we pat our stomachs and thank our bodies for the ability to take in and process such goodness. We chat about where food comes from, eating the rainbow, and listening to our bodies about fullness. Sometimes they eat chocolate before dinner! Sometimes they devour giant plates of fruit. We got rid of the truly harmful diet culture “food rules” and my kids have only been the better for it. Read more>>

Alana Shipman | Artist and Mom

There are many things I have done as a parent that I feel are important in impacting my children. One of the most important one of all that shows up in my children everyday as proof…is instilling them with love and lack of judgement. No matter what the scenario or difficulty, I love them through it and encourage them positively. I feel its so very important to take even a negative situation and teach them how to pull a positive lesson out of it. That is something they can take with them for the rest of their lives. To show them how to look at situations optimistically and with empathy, while making sure their boundaries are strong. Another important thing is paying close attention to your children, for signs of what sparks light in their eyes.These are the things they do with ease and get very happy about. They are the gifts that children are given and should be recognized and nurtured. It gives children a chance to explore and try things out to see what they gravitate to, whether it be playing drums, writing, singing, or a sport. Everyone deserves a good start and to be motivated and loved for the person they were born to be. Read more>>