Yesterday was not at all what any of us envisioned and yet it turned out to be one of our most memorable days. It’s no secret that we’re a big family and, for the most part, we’re pretty harmonious, I would say.
Obviously when you are a parent, you are forming young humans—hopefully to grow to be good, kind, compassionate, selfless, loving, self-sacrificing people. In the process, they’re learning these things. Kids are inherently selfish (needy). The second they emerge from their mother’s womb, a child is doted on, carried, fed, consoled, entertained, etc. and those are good things that a baby human needs. That’s exactly how it is supposed to be.
As the child grows, there comes the time when we teach our children to begin looking outward and to realize that the world doesn’t actually revolve around them but that they are a critical a part of a big, beautiful human family. It’s is this stage of parenting that you must be more aware of personal sensitivity, respecting the child’s uniqueness while parenting confidently. You become a referee at times—when wills are exerted, boundaries are tested, boundaries are crossed.
With young ladies, it’s even more complex. You have to be more mindful of an additional layer of emotions and the inability for those emotions to be expressed all the time. Teaching them that expressing emotions and needs is critical. We always tell our children that their needs and feelings are safest in our care for there is no one else on earth who loves them as deeply and who’s more invested in their happiness, health and overall success as a person than their father and me.
Yesterday, those emotions were communicated and so we pushed our departure back until everyone was settled and peaceful. It was edifying to see courage, strength of will, humility and the communication of personal needs. There’s nothing more important—no deadline, no commitment—than the personal peace of our children.
We drove for only about three hours yesterday and Steve and I decided to pull off and find a place to camp. We took a chance on this pretty place by a reservoir and they had one spot left. We enjoyed a lovely dinner. Viv made our campfire, of course, and s’mores were had by most.
Stephen, Bobby and Maria made new friends with our next door neighbors. I love how quickly kids pick up and play and then long for more in the morning. They had a game of Ghost in the Graveyard before bed and sweet Bobby was so sad to learn we had to leave early in the morning.
We are continuing in Wyoming today and look forward to seeing our good friends.