Things I Learned from My Children

I learned more about ‘carpe diem’ from my children, than from any other earthly source. Some of it was gained from watching them experience the wonder of the world, some was in the process of teaching, training, and learning, but recently much has come from my daughter as she is just simply being herself.

Ever thought about how much people are simply made a certain way? We start out parenting ( at least I did) with the idea, that we picked up somewhere, that we mold and shape our children. But as time goes on I realize more and more that children become what they were made to be. As parents, we are more in the role of cultivators. We encourage or stunt what is there, and children become – through their basic natures and their choices- what they will become.

An important part of the cultivating is surely sparking the ambition to be the best and highest, and I don’t want to diminish that fact. But sometimes it just dawns upon your understanding that much of what a child is was innate within.

All that digression brings me to this: I have witnessed within my daughter a trait that I have admired in characters I have read of, but not found within myself. It is the trait of finding joy in the daily tasks at hand. The carpe diem that lightens those mundane tasks and infuses them with the creativeness they were supposed to have.

When I had read the biography of Grandma Moses, and read through the Laura Ingalls Wilder books, as well as the biography of George Washington Carver, the joy of doing the best at ones everyday work, while at the same time, aiming for ones personal vision evidenced something to me. I saw the trait that lifts the spirit, the trait that the Preacher of Ecclesiastes extolls as “the gift of God”.

But it is my daughter that has shown me this first hand…. and I wonder at how my own progeny could have exhibited this when I am so lacking!

In the balance of nature and nurture it is a truth that we can pattern and learn to cultivate good character and attitudes.

And it amazes me that some things I learn from my children…. things I have needed all my life. Sometimes the vision needs to get small before it gets big.

Know what I mean?