Do you remember the lyrics to that old Regina Belle song, If I Could. It went a little something like this… “If I could, I’d protect you from the sadness in your eyes, Give you courage in a world of compromise…. If I could I would teach you all the things I’ve never learned, And I’d help you cross the bridges that I’ve burned…..If I could…” She goes on to lament about the things she would save her children from if only, she could. Listen to Song Here
As a mom of three, my heart often breaks when I think of the heart ache that their future holds. In a world where deceit, dishonesty and confusion reign supreme, one can’t help but to wonder about the future on every level, which leads me to my second point. As a Mom, how do I prepare my children to handle the inevitable pain, disappointment and even betrayal that could potentially be at every turn?
I find myself caught between a rock and a hard place, conflicted in my own thinking. I firmly believe that a large part of childhood should be magical, because there are many years of hard truths and reality up ahead. But, how do I create a balance between magic and fact?
I think the answer to this question will only continue to grow as we all grow and mature, Mom and Kids. But, this is what I came up with. I try my best to mold well rounded little people. I try to expose them to joy, and I guess some pain. I give them their fair share of responsibility while still allowing them to be children. I teach them about loss, about hard times, about how fleeting status can be and how important gratitude is. I teach them how important it is to be accepting and forgiving, and able to roll with the punches, while holding on to their own personal integrity. I give them a real example of how they should be treated by my relationship with my husband and how in turn they should treat theirs. I push the importance of an education, of pursuing your dreams and being able to stand up on your own two feet. I teach them to own their choices(however, painful that may be), and deal with the consequences. It’s honestly a long list and a lot of things on it were things I had to learn for myself, but even still they are things I hope to impart to them.
All of this brings me back to a quote on whose back I plan to ride for 2014. I shared it at the beginning of the year, and I suspect, it won’t be the last time you hear it from me this year. I hope it speaks to you… as it speaks to me.
“The well-rounded adventurer is adaptable, flexible and versatile. They know that things don’t always go as planned, so like trees they bend with the wind, course correcting as often as necessary. Their capability to do many things competently keeps them pressing forward, staying mentally alert and undistracted in focus. Frustration has no room in their minds to sabotage their determination or to kill their confidence. Prepare, Posture, Position, Arise and Be Wise!!”
I have asked several of my girlfriends what they would like to tell/teach their children, even what they wished that had known, before being out on their own. I would love to hear what you all think as well. Please leave your opinions in the comment section below.