Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Slice of Life - Building Character

Last night I lay with one of my boys, tears snaking their way down his face. His eyes looked at me, filled with sadness. His spirit, crushed. He had worked hard for something he wanted, something he thought he had, only to find out he didn’t.

It is in these moments that my heart picks up its pace as a parent. These are those moments, those teaching moments, that I don’t want to screw up. The moments I hope I don’t miss or brush off because they are unimportant or insignificant to me. In reality, they are a big deal, especially when you are living them.

I tried. I hope my words helped. I tried to pour love through them. To sympathize, but not too much. To weave together words that showed him that this, this messy and sad time, this is what we live for. This is where character is made and grown. That he will come out stronger as a result. That this, even if he doesn’t like it, is his chosen path. And then I asked, how was he going to choose to walk it.

Life lessons are hard, quite frankly sometimes they just plain stink. Sometimes you can see why something has happened, and sometimes you can’t. And yet, it is what we do during those hard times that matters. This is how we develop into people of character. And if we’re going to have times of struggle, I’m glad he was letting me be with him. To share this sadness. Because another lesson that was there was that we don’t have to walk these roads alone.

As bedtime grew near, I sat back. Hoping some of my words sank in. Wondering if it had been enough. I hope he chooses to walk with his head high. He should be proud of his work, but that’s an awfully tough lesson at times. I hope he will continue to work hard and grow even more. I hope, I hope, I hope.

Parenting is hard, really hard, sometimes. But watching our children grow into who they were meant to be? Awesome.

Slice of Life is sponsored on Tuesdays by Two Writing Teachers.