‘Hope’ is an important word to a parent.
“I hope my child understands.”
“I hope my child gets good grades.”
“I hope my child will be able to get into a non-bat-crap-crazy college or better yet, a trade school.”
“I hope that smell of dog crap isn’t my child walking across the carpet.”
“I hope that wasn’t MY child who spray painted the cat purple.”
Hope keeps us going when so much seems to let us down, and allows us to cope with variables better.
But I’m here to tell you that your WHY can fill you with that hope, when you see your labors over time come to full fruition.
Pokemon Evolution in Action
I joke about my oldest son Evan being a Pokemon evolved version of myself. Though he’s part Samoan, he’s blonde haired and blue eyed like myself, packed into a mountain of a body.
Of all my children, I think Evan most naturally took to what I was trying to teach him, and now that he’s married and has five children of his own, those teachings are coming through.
Sitting in the front room of his house, I watched my grandson, named after me (poor child), walk away from the kitchen table, ignoring his mothers patient instructions with a defiant expression on his face.
That is, until he walked into his fathers leg at the foot of the stairs.
Evan had been watching the whole thing, arms folded.
It was so hard to hide my giggling, but I did my best not to ruin the mood.
Jaime froze when he looked up.
“What do you think you’re doing?” my son asked my grandson.
“I’m going to play,” Jaime replied.
“Have you been excused from the table by your mother?”
“No, you weren’t. Did you eat your food, like your mother asked?”
“No, you did not.”
At this point, Evan is slowly leaning down to my grandson, his brows dropping to express his displeasure without having to say anything.
“So what are you going to do…right…now?”
Turing quickly on his heels, Jaime squeaks, “Sit down and eat my food.”
To which Evan adds, “AFTER you apologize to you mother for NOT listening.”
And you can probably guess what happens next…
Evan had a WHY established long ago, just like I have.
He knows what kind of parent he wants to be—and is—and what kind of children he hopes to raise.
Now, that hope is yet to be realized, and this takes time.
But the only true hope a parent has in raising the children they want, is to actively engage themselves, following a predetermined plan.
This is based on your WHY.
For me, this experience showed my hopes realized in my son.
Not only has he surpassed my expectations as an adult, he overjoys me with his determination and focus as a parent, which I see in his continual training of my grandchildren.
Do my descriptions seem cold or mechanical?
Have these articles left you feeling like I’m a calculating-only kind of parent, devoid of joy and laughter or enjoyment in being a parent?
Because my house if filled with laughter, games, happiness and joy.
Every member of this family is cherished, loved, and appreciated for their own individuality, talents, and unique contributions to this family unit.
The HOW in all this is learning how to “be”.
The hope occurs when you can learn to ‘be’ who you are, all the time—so that parenting isn’t something you DO, but becomes who you ARE.
When you know you are being the parent you are meant to be, supposed to be, and CHOOSE to be…I promise there will be a deep hope of success within you.
Here’s the ‘how’:
Be,…and don’t stop.
We all hope to be the best parents possible, don’t we? And we also hope our children will be the strong, well-adjusted, happy adults we see in our minds.
There’s no guarantee that this will be the case—for we all ultimately choose our own paths, but we, as parents, can stack the results in our favor, by being good parents and holding to that hope.
Funny thing is, I’ve learned that oftentimes—even when my hopes aren’t realized—I get something far better.
Isn’t that worth being the best parents we know how to be?
I think so.
WHAT TO DO NEXT
I believe sometimes the best way to build that hope, and to refresh the WHY I hold in my heart for my children, is to remember.
Spend some time today and go through your child’s photo album. Look over the memories you’ve already created.
It’ll inspire you, I promise.
…and if you don’t have a photo album for your child, start one.
You’ve got this!
“The greatest hope for the future, is in the proper raising of the next generation.”