We make this life so much more complex sometimes than it really is. Amidst our philosophies and prescriptions and expansive solutions and steps to a better whatever, the foundation is always love, and likely more often than not, the answer is an expression of love that is simplistic.
The rest below is wisdom and insights from a highly respected and dear friend…
I know there is a time and place to motivate, lecture, critique and all, but it was a good pushback for me…and then when my daughter told me she loved hearing me crack up…no further explanation…no talking on and on…it made me stop and look at her and realize that she notices these little things.
Notes to self
1. Laugh more.
2. It made me feel really good that she told me something she loved about me.
3. It made me want to reciprocate.
All of us parents who want to push our kids to excellence and to be their very best need to realize there is a time and place and most of the time, we just need them to see we love them.
Reminds me of one of my friends…she was a mess in so many areas and so many ways. But she lived one thing that stuck with me and this article brought to the forefront again as I have unfortunately failed at this too many times to count…she could be crying…or cursing up a storm when telling me a story…or be depressed over having no money…or whatever, and the minute her son would enter into her proximity, she lit up—a total brightening and smile and change from head to toe…and I asked her about it after seeing it again and again, and she said, “No one ever did that for me…and I want him to know he is the best thing in my world. Doesn’t matter what else is going on…him being here and being him, is everything.” And I will say, despite all of her shortcomings as a mom, those two boys…they knew their mom loved them.
I can’t believe my daughter is 14. At the same time, I do believe it. I have made my mistakes with her…and I have not been perfect or the best homemaker mom BUT one thing I have done, as I always purposed to do since she was an infant, was to really LIVE each day with her…to feel it…to be in it…and so I feel like it has been 14 years (in a good way). I have been very much invested with her…they say time races by…and it does on the one hand because you can remember…you know I can remember labor and delivery…I remember bringing her home, I remember when she would wear whatever I put her in…how she led our big dog around the house, all of the little daily silly things…her singing the itsy bitsy spider, her obsession with the Teletubbies…singing really annoying songs with her in the car as we listened to Bear in the Big Blue House for the 1000th time…and then I remember 8, and I remember 10 and her attitude and 11, 12, 13…I just remember it all, and so it seems fast when you can remember 2 like it was yesterday…BUT I counter that notion with it also feels like time has walked on by at its normal pace.
I also remember LONG days of homework…holding her when she cried over a shirt not looking right, laughing with her as we watched movies or read books together…wondering when this week or that would end. So, I am not expressing it well here…and you are probably a bit bored with my droning on, but it has been a good 14 years…and I look forward to tomorrow, and next week, and this coming month with her and on and on. And as I write this, I am struck by the fact that I only have ever lived like this with her as her mom. I need to apply this principle of really LIVING it and being invested in every area of my life. I digress…always something new to learn, it seems.
No, my friend, you don’t digress. You most certainly progress, into a place I pray we all can likewise embrace ourselves.