Wednesday, October 24, 2007


I went to “Courage Night” last week. This week, Oprah had guests that were basically in the process of dying from cancer. The reoccurring theme seems to be “Living a Life with No Regrets”. It’s difficult to decide if the point is to not regret your past (since it made you who you are and you can’t unring the bell anyway….) or if you shouldn’t DO anything you’ll regret. I suspect it’s the former though both are good plans to live by. No sense crying over spilt milk goes without saying. Apologize for what you’re TRULY sorry for (especially if hurt feelings were involved) but don’t waste time with a flippant “sorry” that you don’t mean. Take a deep breath, buck up and move on.

You may have seen the essay about the date on a headstone showing the birth date and death date with the dash in between. The important part of life is how you spend that “dash”…I suppose we all worry about who will show up at our funeral or what will be said in our obituary. Not so morose if we give it thought BEFORE the time comes, while we still have time to modify what time we have left. I realized that the people whose opinions matter most are my girls.

Should a parent have to be reminded to enjoy their kids? Actually, when the kids are in their teens and beyond, we DO have to be reminded. When children are little and….more malleable….moldable, it’s easy to enjoy them. Even during the terrible twos and threes when they’re finding power in the word “NO”, you can balance a crazy day with them standing on a stool helping to mix cookies or rocking them to sleep or cuddling with a bedtime story. Once kids hit their teens, the talks are more serious and the nagging more frequent. The eye-rolling…oh don’t get me started with eye-rolling. You get so used to everything being a “teaching” opportunity that you forget to stop when they stop hearing you.

But, I am getting to a point where something Dr. Phil said has hit home. Kids reach a point where you’ve taught them all you can. You’ve given them every lecture and pointed out every flaw in their study-plan. At this point, all you can do is sit back and watch. Be there to celebrate the victories and hug them through the failures. At this point, they need to use all of the ammunition you’ve given them and make the best shot at the target that they can -- maybe even blast out the entire bullseye. Or as we say in our house…we have given them the rope. Now it’s up to them to water ski or hang themselves. I have no doubt they will water ski like champs.

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