I had a long and intense conversation yesterday afternoon with a new friend. We talked about the meaning of life and what makes for a good mother and what we want our children’s lives to be like.
Just about every parent that I have encountered has expressed a wish for their children’s lives to be better than their own. What exactly “better than” looks like had alot to do with what their own childhood was like. My own mother’s childhood was unstable and unsafe and she made sure that her kids had stability and safety. My childhood was thin in the unconditional love department and I have stretched myself to give that to my kids.
My new friend was telling me about her own mother’s struggles to provide for 4 children with an absent, alcohlic husband and what a wonderful job she had done. And made it look easy. She said her mother was the definition of strength and grace under pressure and unconditional love. And I got to thinking…she would never have known those things about her mother if their circumstances had not been difficult. And that got me to thinking…. I don’t wish for my kids lives of comfort and ease, of no struggles or challenges. What I wish for my kids is that when those challenges come that there is always another human that loves them, so they are not alone and that the challenges are never so great that they are crushed by them and without hope.
I think that if you have love and hope, you have every thing you need.