20 Life-Changing Quotes on Parenting

I didn’t know my capacity to love until I had my children. I didn’t know how fiercely I would fight to protect them. I didn’t know how motivated I would be to leave the world a better place. Parenting has inspired great thinkers, artists and activists past and present. Here are 20 quotes on parenting by some of the greats to give you inspiration and solidarity as you navigate rearing the loves of your lives.

I didn’t know my capacity to love until I had my children.  I didn’t know how fiercely I would fight to protect them. I didn’t know how motivated I would be to leave the world a better place.  Parenting has inspired great thinkers, artists and activists, past and present.  Here are 20 quotes on parenting by some of the greats to give you inspiration and solidarity as you navigate rearing the loves of your lives.

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1. “It is easier to build strong children than to repair broken men.” – Frederick Douglass

2. “Your children are not your children. They are the sons and daughters of Life’s longing for itself. They come through you but not from you and though they are with you they belong not to you. You may give them your love but not your thoughts, for they have their own thoughts. You may house their bodies but not their souls, for their souls dwell in the house of tomorrow, which you cannot visit, not even in your dreams. You may strive to be like them, but seek not to make them like you for life goes not backward nor tarries with yesterday. You are the bows from which your children as living arrows are sent forth.” – Kahlil Gibran

3. “My most important title is still mom-in-chief.  My daughters are still the heart of my heart and the center of my world.” – Michelle Obama

4. “Mother is a verb. It’s something you do. Not just who you are.” – Cheryl Lacey Donovan

5. “Your children need your presence more than your presents.” – Jesse Jackson

6. “The reality is that most of us communicate the same way that we grew up. That communication style becomes our normal way of dealing with issues, our blueprint for communication. It’s what we know and pass on to our own children. We either become our childhood or we make a conscious choice to change it.” – Kristen Crockett

7. “In a child’s eyes, a mother is a goddess. She can be glorious or terrible, benevolent or filled with wrath, but she commands love either way. I am convinced that this is the greatest power in the universe.” – N.K. Jemisin

8. “You don’t have favourites among your children, but you do have allies. ” – Zadie Smith

9. “When mother-cow is chewing grass its young ones watch its mouth” – Chinua Achebe

10. “To describe my mother would be to write about a hurricane in its perfect power. Or the climbing, falling colors of a rainbow.” – Maya Angelou

11. “Black people love their children with a kind of obsession. You are all we have, and you come to us endangered.” – Ta-Nehisi Coates

12. “Loving someone as fiercely as my mom loves me must be like wearing your heart outside of your body with no skin, no bones, no nothing to protect it.” – Nicola Yoon

13. “The best thing she was, was her children.” – Toni Morrison

14. “Beautiful is the man who leaves a legacy that of shared love and life. It is he who transfers meaning, assigns significance and conveys in his loving touch the fine art and gentle shaping of a life. This man shall be called, Father.” – Stella Payton

15. “Behind every great man is a man greater, his father.” – Habeeb Akande

16. “The kids who need the most love will ask for it in the most unloving of ways.” – Unknown

17. “Children learn more from what you are than what you teach.” – W.E.B. DuBois

18. “Family doesn’t have to be perfect. It doesn’t have to be flawless. It doesn’t have to be what you had in mind. You can’t control it. But it is a gymnasium for love to work out in.” – Bishop T.D. Jakes

19. “I tried to be the greatest boxer in the world and a good parent, too. I had instant feedback on my success as a boxer. Often, parents don’t really know if what they are doing is right or wrong until their child is grown and it is too late to change any of the decisions. Whatever my failings as a parent, I am very proud of all my children. It wasn’t easy for them to make their own way with such a controversial and public father.” – Muhammad Ali

20. “Children have never been very good at listening to their elders, but they have never failed to imitate them.” – James Baldwin

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About The Author

Faye McCray is anMcCray_AuthorPhoto (1) attorney by day and writer all the time. Her work has been featured on My Brown Baby, AfroPunk, AfroNews, For HarrietMadame NoireBlack Girl NerdsBlack and Married with Kids, and other popular publications.  Faye also has a number of short stories and a full length novel available for purchase on Amazon.  Most importantly, Faye is a proud wife and mother to three beautiful and talented young boys who she is fiercely passionate about raising. You can find Faye on Twitter @fayewrites and on the web at fayemccray.com.

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