AS I SUSPECT IS THE CASE FOR MANY PARENTS, I’ve noticed my daughter has inherited one of the traits I dislike most in myself. I was a shy, timid child. (OK, I was also a shy, timid adult for many, many years).
Striking up a conversation on the playground was terrifying. And the things other kids found fun—rollercoasters, diving boards, Halloween decorations—were all too much for me. I hoped that by socializing my daughter differently–by setting up lots of play dates and adventures–maybe she wouldn’t also see life as scary. But she does. Maybe it’s my fault. But I think it’s in her DNA.
We will try
So lately we have a new motto in our house: We will try.
For instance, on many a trip to the playground, I’ve watched my daughter stare as other kids climbed up the slide. Not climb the ladder and slide down, but climb the slippery, twisty, slide-y part of the slide. (We can talk about whether or not you’re supposed to climb up the slide in another blog, but she clearly longs to try it.)
The other day we had a playground all to ourselves, though, and we were wearing proper slide-climbing shoes. So we gave it a shot. I held her hand as she went. When she slipped and got discouraged? “Some things are hard,” I said. “We will try again.”
But I’m trying
Of course, this advice does not only apply to her. Most days I do not get my 10,000 steps in. It’s hard to get 10,000 steps in. But I try.
I long to be the kind of mother that makes delicious, healthy dinners every night. But it’s hard. It’s much easier to go through the drive-thru. But this week we ate at home more than we ate out. I’m trying.
This year the “Community Read” in my town is “White Fragility” by Robin DiAngelo. Is it easy to spend the precious little reading time I have in my over-scheduled life reading about the ways I have been unknowingly complicit in racism? No. It’s hard. But I’m trying.
What hard things are you trying these days?