Tuesday, April 25

Life Lessons

Intimately experiencing a child growing up is such an honor. It is an incredible joy to witness your own little one discover some of the cool things about life - examining their planted seeds grow into flowers or veggies, mastering the important life tasks of skipping or riding a bike.

Life also teaches some painful lessons that I would rather not see my children learn. There was a day a few months back when Trinity said, "Mommy, I'm not really a princess, am I?" "Of course you are! You are the princess of our family." "But I'm not really a princess." This would have been a wonderful opportunity for me to talk about heaven with her - about how she is really a princess, just like I am. We are both the daughters of The King, with our mansion and jewels awaiting our arrival in heaven. It's kind of like we're just in disguise as paupers until we reach heaven. Just because we don't wear gowns and crowns every day does not change the fact that we are, in fact, royal princesses. I did say all of that to her later, but at the moment I was paralyzed by the loss of innocence I was witnessing in my precious girl.

Yesterday she hit me again with another one of those comments that stabbed my heart. "I wish I was Aunika" (a friend from school). "Why's that?" "Because Aunika can do things that I can't do." I literally felt my heart ache. She went on to explain that Aunika can swing all the way across the rings at the park, a very important feat for pre-schoolers. It's true - Aunika is a little monkey and very athletic for a five-year-old. Of course I shared with Trinity that she is able to do things that Aunika can not (to which Aunika hollered from the next room, "Like what?"), and that everyone learns to do things at different paces. But the message was clear. My daughter feels less about herself because she is learning to compare herself with others and sees herself as inadequate.

This is what parenting is all about. Sure, it is necessary that I teach my kids how to tie their shoes and go potty in the toilet. It's important that I help them practice reading and writing. But what really matters are these life lessons: You are a child of The King. You are precious and worthy because you belong to Him. It's all about Him and His glory. Heaven is where we get to be together forever.


Johnathan M. Thomas said...

It's amazing what we, as parents, learn while raising kids. Of course, some moments hurt... They help us enjoy those moments when pain is nowhere to be found. I'll take all of it.

I wonder if God has ever felt this way when we say we want to be like someone or something else.


Allan W. said...

Preach, sister!

Great post hon! I'm so proud of my kids, it's so good to see them learning about...everything.

Randy said...

This is exactly what I want my kids to hear.

Jonathan wondered about God's feelings - good stuff - I can hear God saying to me "how about being who I made you to be!"

rebecca marie said...

i'm gonna bring you a book to read to her. my cameron is just a little bit to young for it, but it's fabulous. it's about being a princess, and it is priceless to me.

also, my princess asked me the other day if her dress made her look fat. i was horrified, because even though *i* am fat, i have fabulous self image, and she doesn't hear that from me. when i asked her where she heard that, she said "sandy asked sponge bob if she looked fat in her space suit."

we are fighting a losing battle where self image is concerned. from fat looking space suits, to acrobatic five year olds... our kids will just plain learn to compare themselves. it is so sad and i don't know how to win that battle.

rebecca marie said...

oh, and as far as God wanting us to love ourselves... it's such a huge big deal. HUGE. i just tell my babies God made us all different on purpose, and He did it for His very own pleasure. i hope it sinks in.

KMiV said...

I got hit from my 13 year old with--"You're not wearing that are you? You look like an old man in shorts as pajamas." We were just going to friend's house for dinner--since when do teens, who wear shorts and sandles all the time, worry about others wearing that?


Sarah Megan said...

You did an AMAZING job with that DVD. I just got done watching it. It so makes me wanna junp on a plane and head there RIGHT NOW. But I have,what only like 40 days :)