Thursday, April 21, 2011

Fifth Concerto

See if you can tell what book I have been rereading…

I want my girls to have balance.  I will be disappointed if they do not feel compassion and mercy for others, but I do not want them to feel that simple need is a basis for giving.  If my daughters come to believe that having a need entitles a person to their compassion then they are in danger of expecting others to do for them what they could do (with a little hard work) for themselves.
The daily wisdom of this should show in how I parent and live.  I should strive to model: a willing and joyful work ethic; frequent exercise of my mind in solving problems (not always running to a “helpful” YouTube video); an absolute trust in God to carry me through (but never to “make it easy” for me).  I need to model applying myself to helping others help themselves, but not at the expense of that person’s chance to provide for them self.  Perhaps this last one is done in giving a person the education, opportunity, and space to use their own mind and own hard work.  As much as I can see these things all at work in how I teach childbirth and my services as a doula…I fail all the time as a parent.  It is hardest to be my best for the people I love the most.
I want my daughters to learn to use their minds, not just their bodies as our “grocery store check-out line” culture would have them believe.  I do not worship Capitalism, Intelligence, or Humanity.  I worship a God who created me out of love.  He created me with a capacity to love others.  He fashioned my mind for complex thoughts.  I am created in His image; capable of wisdom and the ability to act on it.
I do not want my daughters to feel limited by their gender nor do I want them to feel a cultural compulsion to shed their feminine nature to be “productive” or to have value.  I do not want my daughters to get socialized by the Disney/Hollywood/Bestseller List notion of romance and emotional love.  I hope my daughters can view screens (TV, internet, video games) as a tool to be used in moderation, not as an escape or addiction that slowly drains them of the desire and ability to think.
My daughters are beautiful, confident, intelligent, and capable young ladies; not because I am a wonderful mother (more in spite of my parenting) but because God created them this way.  I have the task to be my best and to encourage, reward, and discipline in such a way as to nurture and grow these traits into their adulthood.

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