Monday, September 3, 2012

hidden in the most unlikely places

"You cannot teach a man anything; you can only help him discover it in himself," writes Galileo. 
An inspiring thought. But if you're a parent: how terrifying.

On a roadtrip with a friend this weekend, we discussed many matters of the heart. But one of the discussions/realizations we approached together was a renewed appreciation for the difficulty of parenting. As a child, you expect that your parents know how to do their job--as if they've gone through parent-training boot camp and have learned all the right answers for every question you throw at them, rehearsed all the right responses for every tantrum you throw, and memorized all the right words to say whenever something shatters your little world. A child can't imagine their mother being anything other than a mother, or picture what their dad was like before he became a father.

And then, you realize that your parents were learning the job on the fly. No one gave them a how-to manual on how to raise children. And even if someone had, it wouldn't have really mattered, because all their tips and handy hints would have been foiled by the uniqueness of you. What a daunting task.  

It gave me a renewed appreciation and awe for when my parents say not just the right thing, but the best thing.

One day I got a text from my dad with this quote:
"All things are delightful when you are present."--Imitation of the Christ 
That has continued to cheer me up for months afterwards.

And my mother is the only person in the world who could possibly send me an inspirational email with just the right quotes from Mama T, Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, and North and South woven together seamlessly. 
It's like the woman understands me or something. And that's quite the miracle.

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