1/5/09

Successful People

Posted on Monday, January 5th, 2009


I will focus my efforts on helping them build character.

I will structure their lives to ensure that when they're grown,
they'll be successful people.

I will read them stories and play them songs
that teach them right from wrong.

I will sign them up for activities to make sure they'll be well-rounded,
the type of guys who play sports and at least one instrument.

I will take them to church every Sunday,
dropping them at their classes and picking them up,
to make sure they'll hear how to live their faith.

I will fight to get them into a school that's just right for them,
and then stay on top of homework and grades (and teachers).

I will tell them what shows they aren't allowed to watch
and why, and I'll monitor their computer time.

I will feed them fruits and vegetables, whole grains and proteins
to help their bodies grow.....

Yes, that's what I will do.....

I suppose those are all good things, but it sure seems like a lot.

And I figure this means I'll need to live what I'm telling them to live.
I'll need to engage in activities that keep me well-rounded. I'll need to exercise and maybe even take up playing an instrument. I'll need to strive to reach my personal goals, doing things I love. I'll need to live in a way that teaches them right from wrong. I'll need to eat fruits and vegetables, whole grains and proteins to keep my body healthy. I'll need to tell myself what shows I can watch and why, and monitor my computer time. I'll need to live my faith past Sunday mornings and love unconditionally. Overall, I'll need to live a disciplined and organized life, because I'll need to be an example of the kind of life I'm striving to create for them.

That would all be good....

But it sure seems like a lot.


And then it hits me....

Above all the rest,
I need to sit with them, really being with them,
talking to them and respecting them.
I need to accept myself when I don't get it right, just as I accept them.
I need to forgive myself when I fail at the list, just as I forgive them.
I need to take them places and show them things,
while I listen and care deeply about their thoughts,
big and small.
At times I need to forgo keeping us busy with activities
so we can have time to just be together.
I need to laugh with them and cry with them.
I need to take care of their hearts.
That is how I will speak the most loudly of the love I have for them.

I will give them me.

They are worth my time, that's what they'll learn.

And that sure seems like a lot.

37 clicked right here to comment:

Kristina P. said...

And You are the perfect solition for whatever ails them.

Kristina P. said...

Or solution. Whatever.

Kim said...

Beautifully written Heather. A very gentle reminder to us all :)

Anonymous said...

Heather, what a great post. You brought me to tears!

I stop in here every couple of weeks and have been following Asher's story. We've been praying for him and all of you!

You look great, by the way. I love the new hair!

Lisa Utecht

The Mom said...

Poweful words!

Cynthia said...

I just love the way you write. Such a gift.

I try to remember that I'm giving my kids 'me' everytime I think I'm not doing/being 'enough'. Yes, they still haven't been to Disneyland and don't have as much 'stuff' as they might have if I were working. However, they have me here all the time for them and that's a very expensive privelege we are fortunately BARELY able to afford. I need to make that count.

Jillene said...

What a GREAT post!! I am going to try my hardest to be a better wife and mother this year. I want to take each child on a date probably every other week (since my hubby has to work every other weekend). I want to spend that quality time with each one of them. I want them to be able to tell me anything and everything. I want to be more patient and not yell so much. Here's to 2009 and being a better mom!!

LisAway said...

Perfect. You got it all, I think. I love the bit about taking care of their hearts.

And that is a FABULOUS picture. I just love it.

I didn't cry while reading this, but very almost: it turned into a sneeze. Does that happen to other people? Like if your eyes are watery for too long then instead of coming out in tears, it comes out in a sneeze? Well, it happens to me.

Jeff and Valerie Carr said...

good reminder.

Kate Coveny Hood said...

Beautiful and true.

happygeek said...

BEEE-YOO-TI-FULLLL.

Sara@ Butterville said...

Thanks girl! What a sweet way to nudge our hearts.

Sarah@Life in the Parsonage said...

Girlie, you choked me up yet AGAIN! This one hit home...right in the parsonage my friend.

RosyRose said...

very good Heather! I liked it a lot!

The Three 22nds said...

Even my 5 year old thinks you are something special! I had made a comment about another Heather who he didn't know, and he looks at me with a twinkle in his eye and said, "do you mean "of the EO", mom?"

sara said...

beautiful post! And having mostly raised my kids, I can tell you it is very true!!

When you get a minute, can you email me how to use mr. linky? sarawbowyerATmsnDOTcom. thanks so much!!!

Kazzy said...

Great goals. Once I heard a speaker say that at the end of one's life we rarely hear, "I should have spent more time at the office (or substitute any other family distraction here)." Time with our families is never time we regret as life passes. I don't want to die with any major regrets, and I think knowing I shorted my kids too often would be one of them. Best of Luck!!!

Keyona said...

Giving them you is all they will need to strive. You are such a good mom!

Heidi Ashworth said...

I've had to do a lot of things that I never dreamed I would--a lot more than you have here--but the things that mattered the most is just what you are saying--just being with them just "being" when I am with them. And listening and validating and paying them attention. Those things get lost in the shuffle of all the "do's" which are so important and often not optional. You think about these things so much more than I did when my kids were their ages. By the way, Asher with his feet on the wall--what a crack up! It seems so out of context with that darling round bald head! Love that picture!

CC said...

Absolutely right. But it's hard to remember. Yesterday, I just sat down with my grumpy daughter. I stopped cooking. I stopped unpacking. I just sat.

and she loved it.

Becoming Me said...

First of all...this post was amazing and inspiring.

Second---you won the dishcloths! I'll formally announce it at midnight, but your name was blindly picked! Please e-mail me with your address. Thanks. Angela

Melanie J said...

I think you've got it just exactly right.

Debbie said...

See. Again you are showing the brilliance! I love this and agree with every word. I haven't always succeeded but I have tried.

BoufMom9 said...

What a beautiful post! I am so glad you stopped by to say "hi"... and i will be following you on Twitter now too.
Hope you got a chance to take a look at tuesday's calendar ....

Less Toil Traci said...

Beautimus (that means beautiful in my lingo). Again you make me reflect. I love it.

t h a i t r a i t said...

Oof. I should be taking notes. You = exemplary.

(Notes, for, you know, 2017...when we start popping out baby Ashers.)

Steph @ Diapers and Divinity said...

Oh Heather, it made me tired just thinking about your list = my list. I think I can sum up your post in one sentence:

"Be a mom: that sure seems like a lot."

Great thoughts, girl.

Sue said...

Wonderful stuff. Thanks for making me think. (That's quite the feat ;>)

Lisa @ Crazy Adventures in Parenting said...

Beautiful, and so so right!

You've been awarded, dear sweet lady :)

http://www.crazyadventuresinparenting.com/2009/01/award-time.html

3 Bay B Chicks said...

What inspires you to write, Heather? Seriously. The posts I read when I log onto your site are wonderful...sometimes funny, sometimes serious, and always poignant. I know I have left a similar comment before, but it is worth mentioning again.

Your writing inspires me to do more with my own. Thank you.

-Francesca

Alyson (New England Living) said...

Loved this post! It's a great reminder for all of us.

Carol @SheLives said...

Yes, it is a lot. And each day brings its own joys and challenges. Somehow, we grow right along with them.

Octamom said...

Beautiful!

Blessings!

Jamie @ Purposeful Pursuit said...

Beautiful!

Great blog, by the way. I found you through your comments on some other blogs I read. I'm going to stay and read for awhile.

Jessica said...

This totally identifies the answer to the tension I wrestle with all the time- what do my children really need, and are they getting it? Your answer is profoundly simple and beautiful. me. They need me. As easy and overwhelming as that! Thanks. Lovely.

emilycrowderphotography said...

I love that first pic! SO cute.

Love your brown hair too. Very Pulp Fiction!

Mary Moss said...

This is a beautiful post. I just love your heartfelt desire to be a great mom:-)

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