Monday, November 30, 2015

It's Not Fair

I am pretty sure I single-handedly fund my local library. My kids check out at least ten books a piece and I can never find them all when they are due. Of course, I could go online to renew them but that never seems to happen. I was scouring the bookshelves for a book called "Trains" and chuckled to myself. Virtually every book in my son's bookshelf is about trains. Needle in a haystack.

"Hey Luke! I just got an email from the library that we have a book overdue called 'Trains'. Have you seen it?"
"No," he sighed. "But that's just so unfair."
"What's unfair bud?" I asked, fully expecting him to be talking about a topic unrelated to library books.
"That you have to pay a late fee when I lost the book. You shouldn't have to pay for my mistake. Let me know what the fee is and I'll take care of it."
"Really?"
"Yeah! I have to take responsibility."

My heart warmed and I was overcome with gratitude for this child. "I really appreciate you accepting personal responsibility. I love you, bud."

He went back to Legos without missing a beat. I continued to look through the bookshelf but I wasn't seeing any of the titles. I was thinking about the rewards you get as a parent. It can seem like we have to say the same things so many times. It can feel like we are talking to a wall. We are exhausted by all the ways they push us past our limits. And then, we are given a moment like this. A moment that says, "See - They are listening. It is worth all the work. They will be good people because of it." Those moments are like a light in my heart that keep me going through the dark and challenging spots. They remind me that there are bound to be more just around the corner.

What moments have shown you that your hard work is worth it? I encourage you to write them down and read them during a particularly challenging stage of parenting. It just might be the light that gets you through.

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