Book Review of The Messy Life of Parenting
By: Lori Wildenberg
There are few people I have come across who have a true heart for helping others, coupled with knowledge and compassion as they reach out to other’s hearts. Lori Wildenberg is one of those people. Because of these characteristics, I jumped at the chance to read her book The Messy Life of Parenting.
I have followed Lori’s writing for a while now and her book beautifully reflects the love and compassion she puts into her work. Not only that, but I have experienced first hand her empathy and warmth. I was supposed to read her book last summer, but because of the loss of our home in a wildfire, I wasn’t able to read it for several months. Lori reached out to me, not concerned about if I read her book, but with concern over the well-being of my family and me. She continues to check-in and provide long-distance support and encouragement.
(Please note, all of the opinions in this review are my own. I received a free copy of The Messy Life of Parenting, but I receive no compensation from this review or if you purchase the book.)
As a parent of younger kids, I see the great need to look at the wisdom of those before me. With older children of her own, and immense experience working with families, MOPS, and writing, Lori provides the information, guidance, and wisdom young parents can great benefit from. Additionally, she writes in such a way, that parents with older children can gleam her wisdom.
The Messy Life of Parenting tackles many of today’s most important parenting concerns:
- including emotional intelligence
- stage and age-related information
- toxic and emotional abuse
- healing wounds
- raising kids based on their uniqueness
- helping kids gain self-awareness
- being a united family
- balancing independence and support
- creating connection
- step-parenting and single parent families
- the messages we send our children with our words
- unconditional love
- sibling rivalry, comparison and competition
- character building
- most importantly relationship
Each of these topics, and more, are discussed in an easy-to-read, and not-easy-to-put-down style. Lori uses examples from the many families she has encountered in her work, writings of fellow parenting coaches, and support with Christian values.
This book may discuss many of the “messy” parts of parenting, but it gives more hope and encouragement than anything else. We all struggle with some, or many, aspects of parenting. Books like this can provide us with wisdom and support we may not receive anywhere else. The heart of this book is love and hope, two crucial parts of parenting.
I believe this quote sums up the heart of the book,
I want to live in a home where family resides, one where people rely on one another, laugh with each other, share tears, and do life together. I want my kids to know, no matter what, they are part of a family that helps one another (Page 12).
I think as parents we can all agree with that statement. I recommend this book, not only as a parenting guide, but as a book that will bring parents back to the heart of parenting. Our relationship with our kids is the most important part of our parenting journey. The Messy Life of Parenting provides key examples to help us as parents. Working together as a united family, while also coaching our kids to become strong, independent adults, is not as easy task. But we can do it.
To read more from Lori, you can visit her website
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Review by: Emily Scott, PhD