19 May 2014

Triumph

Parenting:
Moments of hope and despair
Moments of triumph and defeat
Moments of dependence and independence
Moments to love, hug, laugh, cry, do over, pick up, plan, be
Moments to take your breath away

Last week I received a note from my twenty year old daughter who has spent the last sixteen months in New York. She’s my spunky middle child who is so much like me that when she was little we’d butt heads. She was also the only child, out of all five who were home schooled, to never go to any form of public school. Home schooling adds another dimension to the parenting equation – another worry, another reason to say “I really can’t blow this”, and another element where as a parent I would have to step back and let them sink or swim on their own.  As most parents do I tried to teach her the value of work, play, compassion, respect (for herself, others, the environment), things of God, and things of learning- math, reading, history, science and such.

Then I got her note which says, “Thank you for helping me know how to be myself and be happy with being ME (something I have found to be a rare attribute to have). I love my life so much!”

Though it wasn't intentional in the midst of 1+1=2 and ABCs and "say your prayers" and "take out the trash" she learned one of life’s most important lessons.

There is no formula for parenting. It’s a mix of being present, encouraging, allowing freedom within safe boundaries, giving a helping hand when the fall is too big, and cheering, hugging, and letting go.


What is a moment of triumph you have experienced as a parent?