Recently, Lisa and I sat down with Lisa Hendey of CatholicMom.com about our book Then Comes Baby: The Catholic Guide to Surviving & Thriving the First 3 Years of Parenthood. In the interview, we share some of the struggles we’ve been through along the way and the ways that God has led us through those challenges. Plus, we share how parents of infants and toddlers can really celebrate those early years and use that time to create the foundation for a truly joyful, love-filled, family life. I hope you’ll check out the whole thing, but here’s a taste!
Lisa: When we were finally able to start a family–especially after everything we’d been through–we were thrilled. But every time we told someone we were expecting, they would start telling us stories of how awful it was going to be. “You’ll never sleep again. ” “There goes the romance.” “You’ll never get a moment’s peace.” People seemed to rejoice in trying to kill our joy about having kids. We wanted to send a different message. Sure parenting is hard work, but we like to think of it as the hard work that goes into planning an awesome party.
Dr.Greg: Exactly. You could approach a party dreading every second. Resenting the time you have to put into decorating. Dreading all the preparation time and cooking, and effort. Or, you could allow the hard work to build the excitement and the joy and remind you of the specialness of the thing you’re celebrating. We don’t sugar coat anything in the book. We’re very real. Yes, parenting will be the most challenging thing you will ever do, but it can also be the most enjoyable, fun, loving, rewarding, soul-satisfying experience you will ever have. We want parents to know from day one that their baby’s life is worth celebrating and that every day you get to be a family is a gift from God, and what do you do when someone gives you a gift? You rejoice in it! We want the book to show parents how to rejoice in their family life from day one.
Lisa: We really hope that parents will come away from Then Comes Baby with the sense that all the long nights and sacrifice is about more than that, it’s about opening our hearts to grace. It’s about growing into the people God is calling you to be. It’s about creating the kind of home life that fills your heart with love and your days with laughter. If you can just allow yourself to turn off the inner-critic, and tune out all the people who are lining up to tell you “you’re doing it wrong” and just learn to hear God speaking to you through your child–just as St. John Paul II’s Theology of the Body teaches–then you can discover a path to an uncommonly joyful, loving, grace-filled family life.
Check out the rest! (and many thanks to Lisa Hendey for the opportunity to speak with her and for all the great work she does at CatholicMom.com!)