Tuesday, March 05, 2013

Raising Children.

When I found out that Van Cliburn died, I was sad. My dad was out of town, but when he got home, I asked him about it. As it turns out, Dad had known him from 2-11th grade. His cousin  "ran with the crowd Van was in" more during high school, but they were friends. He said he played with him after school, but only for 30 minutes because he had to go in and practice after that. I asked dad if he ever complained about having to practice. "No. Nope, not ever."

This gives me comfort. 

Van Cliburn was a single minded man. And apparently, a single minded child.

My daughter is fairly that way.  She may not be the Van Cliburn of the dance world, but oh, she loves to dance. She is not the best in her group, not the most perfect, but she rarely stops. She does situps on Sundays for crying out loud. I push her to be better, but I also back way off if I can tell that it's overwhelming her. The son is slightly more versatile in his interests, but is serious about film making. He asks me for feedback and I give it. Sometimes it's harsh. Sometimes it's 100% cheerleading.

Sometimes corrections by teachers feel too severe. It's hard to comfort a child who is being challenged to be better at something. Really, how do we do that? Stop the correction they are getting in their lives? Heaven forbid! But it's tough on them. I want to comfort them, want to make their ache and mine on their behalf go away. I have to consider very carefully the balance between respecting authority and comforting internal wounds.

Every day I question our parenting. Every day. Are we doing too much? Am I one of "those parents?" Are we doing too little? Is one getting more support than the other? I start to sweat, thinking about how I have the potential to "wreck" these lives, but then I remember, who better than us? Who could love them and know them more than us? As long as I am checking on their emotional and physical health each day, and reflecting on their response to what has been said and done, I think things will be ok. If the kids are not doing well and are unhappy, then we will change the schedule, shift the focus, push less/more, cheerlead less/more.
 I've seen enough children grow up to know that there is no way to 100% predict what the adult will be. Really, if they grow up to be thoughtful and polite, I feel that's no small accomplishment. For today, the kids are alright. As far as tomorrow goes, who can tell? We just keep moving forward.

1 comment:

http://www.top10essaywritingservicesreviews.blogspot.com/ said...

Well the first thing I want to tell you is that the only fact that you have such thoughts in your mind means that you]re a great parent and you try to be better. You're great, don't worry.