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Monday, March 22, 2010

Growing Up

Our wisdom comes from our experience, and our experience comes from our foolishness. ~ Sacha Guitry (French playwright)

The theme of mine and Michael’s lives lately has been this exact thing.  When you’re a teenager you think you know everything, especially way more than your parents.  And maybe you really are right about a few things, but that only sparks even more pride.  Then you get to college, and you realize that maybe your parents were right about a few things, but still you have the goods on life.  And your little idealistic self knows that you’re not going to make the same mistakes that most adults do, because, afterall, they’re all idiots, right?  

So then a few years go by, you graduate, and you start to realize that life is hard and you start making some mistakes.  Well, whatever, at least they’re not major mistakes like all the other idiots, right?  But still in the back of your mind you realize you’re just like everyone else.  Then you get married, and again, you’re struck with this same theme again.

Then it happens, the granddaddy of all life lessons: you have kids.  At that point, everything you thought you knew about life in general gets thrown out the window with all your pride.  It may not happen right away, but certainly after the second kid comes along (or after you turn 30) it will.

It may not have been this way for you, but it certainly was for us.  Every year that goes by I realize that I know even less about life in general - money, parenting, relationships, spirituality.  But let me tell you, I have found SUCH freedom in simply accepting that and leaving myself open to learning more.  I still screw up daily, but at least now I’m trying to learn from those foolish mistakes instead of insisting that I am right all of the time.  Every time I start to say that I’m absolutely right about something, a little red flag goes up and says, “Um, maybe you’re wrong or maybe it’s a grey area.”  Sometimes I don’t hear it until it’s too late, but I look forward to the day that the flag goes up BEFORE  I screw up.

I’ll post soon about how all of this has affected my parenting.  Michael posted a bit about how it’s affected our finances here.  It’s all good stuff, but we have a LONG way to go.  I sure am glad that God is patient with me.

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