There’s no such thing as a perfect parent. There are certainly some situations better than others, but even the wisest of us all fall short. My parents are among those imperfect people. They didn’t do it all right. There are things I wish were different, and I know they feel the same. But tonight I got a reminder that sometimes even if every memory isn’t pretty or every decision correct, you never lose the opportunity to do it better than yesterday. You never stop being a parent.
My best friend had a crisis about a month ago. She had to leave her home and needed to be somewhere safe. At 2 in the morning I suggested she go to my parents’ house. I hadn’t spoken to them about it, but I didn’t have to. A few weeks later I needed to bring my goddaughter on a family outing. Tickets were purchased in advance, and I wasn’t sure how we’d accommodate one more. Without asking them, I went to pick her up, and we figured it out later. Their concern was never once about the tickets. Doing what was right for someone I love came first.
A few days ago I called my mom to give her a gift idea for Brynna. We were shopping and BG almost hyperventilated over a TinkerBell doll. In true “grandma fashion” my mom promptly bought out the store. (Of course the grandma logic being if she liked one, she’ll LOVE two!) We love how much BG is loved. We want her to be showered with love and blessings. But more importantly, we want her to understand that giving is always greater than receiving. So tonight, she got to open that present, and after we talked about how everyone doesn’t have the same things we do, she got to choose one doll to keep and one to give to the little girl of someone we know. Brynna then helped wrap the gift and make a card for Genesis so she has a special present on Christmas.
I emailed my parents (as usual…after the fact) and explained that I had taken away one gift that would have been from them. I apologized for that and the fact that they didn’t get to see her open it (which is 98% of the grandparent fun!). My mom’s response was that if Brynna learned a life lesson that’s what was important. She didn’t care that she didn’t get credit. She didn’t worry that Brynna won’t know who gave her the doll. She said she was proud of us for teaching BG something that will impact who she becomes.
My prayer for Brynna has been that I follow God in such a way that she starts ahead of where I did. I have strived to make decisions so she stands on my shoulders and is that much closer to being everything God created her to be. My parents aren’t perfect. But my vantage point is from their shoulders. They have taught me to love in a way that can’t be told but can only be shown. They have lived out love and because of that, I love with my whole heart. And because of that, Brynna lives in love.
No parent is perfect, but in the midst of our imperfections, I’m so glad mine chose to teach me how to love.