When I was a young mom, I always heard the advice "Pick your battles." That always sounded good, but I'm not sure I REALLY understood the advice until Alicia came along. Smart, funny, realist and cynic... and quite possibly the most stubborn child ever born into existence.
When she was younger, she had absolutely no desire for girl clothes.
No matter what I did, for about three years, I could not convince her to wear girl clothes. We used to joke that she'd be going to her high school prom in a tux. But, "pick your battles," they said. and so I did. This was not the end of the world.. this was just boy clothes. So, I didn't fight her anymore.
One day, we were at my mom's house in Oregon, and Alicia said to me, "Mom... I don't think I want to wear boy clothes anymore." And that was that. I quickly purchased some girl clothes before she could change her mind... and she's never gone back.
"Pick your battles" works. In parenting, there are so many things you can draw a line in the sand on... but how many of them are really worth it? Are there issues that it IS worth it for? Of course, and you draw your lines on those. But, why waste the sand on the ones that just don't matter that much?
I'm finding the same in life, not just in parenting. So many things we can work ourselves up over, and so few of them are actually worth the expenditure of energy and emotion.
Pick your battles in life, too.