Tracks In The Dust

A Father's Advice About Learning the Mission of Life

Archive for the tag “Growing up”

Thankful for Our Children

My wife has said before that as a parent you may not always like your kids, but you will always love them. There may be some sense in that for many of us. As our kids get older and become adults they have had plenty of time to formulate their own idea of the order of their lives. Sometimes they make poor choices ( and you wonder if anything soaked in during those younger years), sometimes they take things for granted or create problems that are not really there.

One thing I have learned as my kids got older ( they are all over 21 now) is that they are forever entwined in their childhood personas. When they were born, from the day they could actually respond to things around them, my wife and I could tell that each of our four children were unique in their own way. They had their own way of looking at the world from virtually the day they were born. And all the life lessons and teaching you could apply would help to shape the edges, but their personality was something they were born with.

So as adults my wife and I can still see it. We had 3 sons in a row, and each one of them had their own perspective on things. While one of them was Intellectually reason out the simplest of problems ( even at 3 years old), another one of them got easily frustrated and would work to plan to manipulate his surroundings , the third was laid back and things would roll off and he would work through things in such a simple way and just smile. My daughter was our last, she was earthy, of the earth she loves animals more than people, enjoys nature and adjusts to things overtime when she finds the balance.

One thing they all had in common was music, my children did not all become consummate musicians ( however one of them has composed a number of great songs playing all the instruments and vocals). But music was meaningful. It is the canvas in which our lives would speak through sound and emotion. It ties us together in so many ways.

So this holiday season, when my adult kids will all be visiting our home we are thankful. We are grateful that we have had the opportunity to experience being a parent and proud of what they have become.

Empty Nest

Empty nesting time. It is a reality for almost all parents at one time or another. Notice I don’t say “all” parents because I can suppose that some 30-year-old adults are still living with their parents somewhere ( for good or bad).

Empty Nesters

My wife and I can recall some of those days when they were very young. We’d wish for them to be a bit older and provide us some quiet nights sleep and a bit less chasing them around to keep things out of their mouths.

As they grew older we started to realize there were just “different” levels of challenges. Dating, distractions, puberty, peer pressure that leads to all of the moments when you ask yourself ” is this really my child?”  During their teens it was sometimes hard to distinguish how they would totally forget the lessons that we would have hoped the had learned in their “formative” years. But yes, they did forget. Often in some cases.

But mistakes will happen ( hopefully not catastrophic or life threatening… each which I have learned can be different) 🙂

We had one child who left abruptly when he turned 18, and didn’t look back. We didn’t really interact with him at all but after  12 years we have finally come to  know him again thank fully.

It is hard to let go, but they all have to find their own course in life, and what you have taught them (and they retained) has to be good enough.

My advice to my kids ( if they read these now, or later) is to be centered in who you are spiritually, remember the fundamentals between right and wrong, it’s okay to make mistakes, its okay to be frustrated and angry with life- but you need to make something out of those pitfalls. Apply the lesson to what’s going on ahead in your life.

So here we are – with our empty nest. But honestly we have 4 great kids who  we love more than anything, and they are  out on their own making a “go” of it. We’ll embrace them the best way we know how.  Yup, and here I am  at tracks in the dust still trying to share advice. Guess we can all learn no matter how old we get. I am learning how to be an older parent.

 

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