Thursday, 24 July 2008

2: What a mess. (but actually 642)

Of course as soon as I posted yesterday I started freaking out about what to write for today. I considered posting something previously written, but thought it was too soon to do that, since it’s only day two. You, The Reader, might not know, but I would, and I’d feel like a cop out. Piper (9 week-old daughter) cried out around 3:15 this morning and I lay awake for the next hour thinking about What To Write. And then I started thinking about my upcoming trip to New Mexico and what a butt it’s going to be to try to keep this up while I’m out there. The consequence of this was oversleeping.


But that’s the deal. It’s what I signed myself up for (“foolish!” he thinks now).

So what to talk about?

I had lunch with an old high school friend I hadn’t seen in years. Of course there was the slightly awkward “we used to be best buds but that was fifteen years ago and now we’re catching up and kind of feeling the situation out” vibe. But really, it was just great. He’s recently (four years or so) begun a deepening relationship with Christ and his passion and joy were etched on his face and in his words. It was beautiful. Even more beautiful is his desire to serve, to do whatever his Lord and his church need him to do and, as an extension of that, the impact it’s had on his family. How it is changing his wife and molding his children.

Later Shannon and I were talking about the blog and flossing and good habits and she said “it’s about discipline.” She pointed out that we have crappy discipline and we agreed that we have to be more disciplined in our own lives if we plan on doing anything other than scarring our children. But how does one go about being more disciplined? And THAT made me think about a conversation Ben Moon and I had a couple years back about the difference between commitment and discipline. (I’ll write about that tomorrow.)

Raising a kid is like drinking from a fire hydrant. Keep them clean, keep them fed, baseball, taekwondo, golf camp, swim lessons, zoo camp, soccer, school, after-school clubs, reading, homework, bike riding, computer: and that’s just one. We’ve got four. Shannon doesn’t recall the last time ALL the laundry was done. The dishwasher runs at least once a day, and only once leaves the sink full of dishes. Shannon’s friend’s son (he’s six) is already doing piano recitals. Piano?!? Crap! Our kids aren’t doing anything musical! We’ve got to have some sort of music education!

We don’t read enough with them. We don’t sit as a family for dinner enough. We don’t have a “Cohesive Parenting Strategy.” We talk about doing these things. A lot. But between laundry and cooking and dishes and baths and practices and a job that travels…


This is messy. I wanted this to be about the decision to be a good parent, an involved parent, about making “being a good parent” a higher priority, but all I’ve done thus far is show what a lousy parent I am. And I’m over my word limit.

This is me living, as P.J. says, naked & unashamed.

So I guess I’ve gone from not knowing what to write about to having too much. I’m going to put a cap on it here and pick back up tomorrow. For those of you who think it’s okay for me to go over my limit and that I should just keep going…that’s kind of the point of this whole exercise, and this blog in particular. Being a better parent is about being responsible. And being responsible is about setting limits. I’m already past my word and time limit today.

So tomorrow…

1 comment:

Big Brother said...

It's interesting that you mention flossing in Wednesday's post, b/c I just went to the dentist last week and came out of it resolved to be a better, more consistent flosser. What do you know, great minds think alike!

Flossers of the world, unite!

One thing I've learned out here is that the past is past - you can't change it. And really, you have no control over what the future brings. But you do have right now, and that's where God exists, with the right Now. So if you miss a day where you don't write/post something, that's okay; the only Person whose opinion really matters doesn't think any less of you - He still loves you and is crazy about you. Ask yourself, "What can I write right NOW?" and go from there.

I like what I've read so far. I look forward to Friday's haiku