Because it was his “dooty!”
Life has been so busy lately. I’ve had the hardest time finding time to write.
Last week Ana performed at her school’s talent show. She told jokes. When she first asked me if she could participate and said that she wanted to tell jokes, I have to say (with embarrassment) that I was hesitant. I’m so protective of her because she is honestly one of the sweetest little girls in the world. I’m not saying that because she is my daughter. I’m saying it because that is exactly how God made her. She befriends everybody. Ever since she could talk, she would ask every kid at the playground to be her friend. It didn’t matter if 30 kids said no, she’d keep asking until she found one that said yes.
I guess that should have been my first clue. The girl has determination and she isn’t afraid of rejection. At all!
As a mom, I never want to stifle her dreams or passions. I want to always be one that encourages her to try. So, despite MY immediate fear of kids being mean to her if they didn’t think she was funny, I realized this isn’t about me. I realized that if she has the confidence to do it, then she will do it and there would never be any other way.
And you know what? She was amazing! She was so funny and the entire audience was laughing. She made me so proud. It was the first time in my life that I had that maternal pride. Don’t get me wrong…I love all of my children and they give me a sense of pride in seeing what unique, wonderful, little people they are, but it was the first time that it was something “beyond me.” By that, I mean something that I had nothing to do with other than being optimistic and encouraging. That little girl went up there and killed it and she did it effortlessly!
I was so proud of her and angry at myself, simultaneously. Had I listened to my inner voice and its reserves, I would have projected my fear of rejection onto her. I had a brief glimpse into how parents can ruin their children.
When did we lose that child like confidence? I can remember being the same age and playing the piano in my school’s talent show, but fast forward my life ten years, and singing a solo in front of an audience made me nauseous and completely full of fear. When did we lose that ambition that wasn’t wavered by doubt and the fear of rejection? When did we stop doing things that we love, or at the very least had an interest in, because we were unsure of what would consequently happen? At what point did we start allowing the people and things around us to run our lives?
Ana inspired me last week. She helped me to see that my children are not me. They are extensions of me, but will only be as strong, as courageous, and confident as I help them to be. At some point, we all seem to lose that natural child like confidence, as well as faith. However, from this point forward, no matter what stupid voice I hear in my head, I will be sure to let them know that I am cheering for them because they are amazing.
Don’t you wish you could turn off that voice in your own life?