One thing that is staggeringly clear to me as I get older is that there is very little we were meant to do alone. The U.S.A. and so many other countries were founded on the concept of independence, meaning independence from tyranny, from unilateral decision making, and from being bossed around. Progress is usually made through dependence upon each other to enhance ideas, increase productivity, and share life’s ups and downs.
This summer you can explore this dynamic in your life! Perhaps in a journal, or a list, or in conversations. How do you give and receive? How do your children give and receive? Where do you create opportunities for them to practice? By naming what you do (especially when your children can’t see it) you show them. If you find you are doing a lot of giving, give yourself permission to practice receiving.
Being reasonably dependent upon family and friends can be empowering. Life is full of giving and receiving—the latter being a bigger challenge because it invites dependence. By showing our children how to depend upon us, and how other people can depend upon them, we are preparing them for a rich, fulfilling life. By showing them how we give, and receive, we are paving a golden way for their future.
Do you ever doubt your importance as a parent? Let me assure you– you are the connection to the world for your children. You are their curator, their guide. You are the one who allows them to make mistakes, and creates opportunities for them to try again. You are the one who can say “No” when they aren’t able. You are the one who will love them with all of your heart and more deeply than you ever thought possible—and when you parent from a place of connection and unconditional love, you honor and nurture that bond so it becomes the strongest it can be.