When they are small it’s hard to imagine our children growing up and leaving us one day in the future. They are tiny and need us virtually every waking moment, and sometimes they wake us up too.
I’ll never forget, or recover from, the middle of the night heart attacks when one of my children, a very light walker could make it all the way in our room and be leaning over my face to whisper my name. There is nothing quite like the heart failure of being woken up like that. Or the time another of my children decided to sleep walk right out of a hotel room in the middle of the night. #truestory Crazy memories of trying to operate in a sleep deprived fog and just put one foot in front of the other only get funny after some time has passed. Add teething, stomach bugs, and wet beds to the mix and really once you have a child you shouldn’t plan on a full night’s sleep until they are at least 10, maybe 20.
Of course I am exaggerating, sort of, and that’s why it’s hard to imagine that one day these challenging days will end. One day, inevitably, they grow up and they launch out into the world to find and become the adults they were created to be. While we are busy in those daily tasks of just keeping them alive, or keeping a sharpie marker out of their hands, it’s easy to forget we are raising future adults. We want them to have certain character qualities as adults, but how many times do we think about the need to teach them responsibility when we are desperate to get the laundry from the washer to the dryer after one cycle instead of restarting it for the third time.
I’ve been in your shoes, and some days still find myself there – days that seem entirely too long and too busy. If I’m not careful, a week goes by or a month and I wonder what have I done to help build character in my children.
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