Last fall I posted a note to Anna that I'm really fond of.
It was a parent's hope that they had taught a child the important things in life.
Sometimes it seems that we get so busy with the day to day living,
we assume they know it all by osmosis or something.
It's kind of like teaching them to drive a car.
I've been driving for a looong time and am not sure
I would remember to teach them all the little nuances that I now take for granted.
In parenting, as in everything in life, our actions teach so much more
than our words ever will.
Our oldest child will soon be turning 26.
It has been quite a learning experience.
A learning curve that isn't anywhere close to being over.
Our children have all been born of us, given as gifts to us by God
for whatever time He deems they have on earth.
We have been borrowed these beautiful children.
Sometimes in the busy days that seem to be our life I wonder what they have learned.
Have we, as parents, done our best to teach them from the first time our hands held theirs.
artwork by Andy Buck
What kind of moral character will they display to the rest of the world?
When they come of an age where they develop their own sets of morals and values,
will they be able to stand for them?
Will they have the guts to stand and shout from the highest peaks?
Will they cower and stay silent?
Will they be able to stand firm in the truth, whatever that truth is for them?
Will they lead by example, not spouting words which have no meaning for them?
Recently, I had the pleasure of hearing how one of mine has come to this point in life.
I had the pleasure of listening to a very animated telling of a situation at school.
A situation where someone made a derogatory comment about her own belief system,
and how she stood up for what she believed in.
In a school that has a reputation for educating some of the toughest kids,
many of whom are in trouble with the law and many more who come from
deplorable situations, she stood up for what she believed in.
She taught them a very vocal lesson about respecting the belief systems of each other,
no matter what they are.
She stressed to them the importance of not only respecting each other, but respecting themselves.
She told them they don't have to settle for less than they deserve.
She tried to get them to understand that waiting for the right thing is much better than settling
for the wrong thing.
And then I had my answer.
Will this one stay silent and not stand for truth?
No, she will not.
She will shout from mountain tops, even to those who don't want to hear it.
She will fight for what she herself believes in.
She will stand firm in the truth.
And someday when her hand are lined and gnarled ...
artwork by Lewis Isaac Testa
those lines will hold many stories of lives she touched
with her honesty, her passion and her freedom to shout from mountain tops.
Yes, I believe she will shout.
And I will be her loudest champion.