The Sling Diaries, Volume VII. A photo-documentary chronicling the art of baby wearing in the lives of families around the world. Over the course of six months, Sling Diarists will create their own Sling Diary though a series of diary entries interpreting a unique theme given to them each month.
Meet all of our Sling Diarists here.
He has loved me unconditionally. He’s never turned his back. He’s never walked away. He’s shown me what real love is.
I’m the daughter of a pastor. And I found faith in God at a young age. It wasn’t something that was pushed on me, or forced. It was part of who my parents were. And they lived it. They quite literally practiced what they preached. It’s something that has shaped me, and made me who I am.
There was a time in my life, as a teenager, that I was mad at God. Circumstances in life didn’t make sense to me. I didn’t understand how a God that loved me could allow these things to happen. So I rebelled. But deep down, I knew that’s not who I was. And it’s not who I wanted to be. So, at 16 years old, I chose to tell my parents about the bad choices I’d been making, knowing full well that would put an end to It. I knew they would hold me accountable from that point on. But I also knew they’d be disappointed. Angry. I knew there would be consequences.
My dad didn’t say much to me for a couple days. Then one day he asked me to go for a ride with him. We got in the car and he was quiet. And then he said something that has stuck with me for the last 16 years.
“Diandra, every week I preach about love, and grace and second chances. This is yours. Don’t mess It up.”
And that was It. We never spoke of It again.
My dad’s unconditional love and grace made me want to be better. He made me want to love people the way that he does. He has always told me that there are two things that matter in this life: loving God and loving people. And he has lived that so well.
There are days that I am completely overwhelmed and feel like I’m sinking. Life isn’t always easy. Motherhood isn’t always easy. Loving people isn’t always easy. Choosing kindness and patience over anger and frustration isn’t always easy.
I’m grateful for the example of unconditional love I had in my parents. I know that I’m far from perfect. My kids know that too. They see me fail every day. Sometimes I loose my patience. Sometimes I put them in front of a movie while I clean my house. Or breathe. Sometimes I skip play dates because I don’t feel like leaving the house. Sometimes I tell my 5 year old to please stop asking so many questions.
I hope that in the midst of these hectic, crazy, sometimes overwhelming days of childhood, my kids grow up knowing that the most important thing in this life is loving God and loving people. And at the end of the day, when all is said and done, I hope they know without a doubt that I love them.