Angel Note

Angel Note
"If Music be the food of Love, Play on!" -- Wm. Shakespeare, Twelfth Night

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Never Disappointed?

My mother once shocked me by telling me that she used to come up with new ways every day to disappoint me, with the plan that that way i wouldn't grow up not knowing how to deal with disappointment. Well, for better or worse, I think her plan worked (sometimes I wonder if it worked so well I EXPECT disappointment)!
I was thinking the other day, though, that perhaps this is one reason why I was led to LadyBug some two dozen years ago. I wonder if the fact that I have spent the last two decades convincing her that she is not only worthwhile, but strong in her own right, has made it possible for her to continue through this ordeal with cancer in the way she has. She has stayed positive and focused throughout the whole ordeal, and has earned the respect of observers for her courage.
I have never really considered myself to be a "strong person" but feel that my mother-developed ability to see adversity as a temporary challenge has enabled me to help LadyBug in this trial. I also believe, as Delirious has stated, that our faith in the Lord Jesus Christ has helped us through this also. With His aid, all things are possible, and I feel that when He is blessing us, we can overcome any obstacle. It has inspired me to seek other stumbling blocks in my life to remove.
This has also shown me that there are some things in our lives which we cling to that simply are NOT important. I have found that dropping some of these things was easier than it would have been three months ago. I'm not giving up every indulgence or pastime, but I am recognizing which ones I definitely can do without.
So, although she sometimes scares the crap out of us, at this time of year, I am Thankful for a mother who wasn't afraid to disappoint her children. Repeatedly. On purpose....


Stick said...

Amen, and I do the same for my kids. Sorry, kids get used to disappointment, cuase I say no often.

Delirious said...

I have a neighbor who can't bear to disappoint her kids. I told her Mom's theory, but she just can't bring herself to do it. For example, her kids have gotten every game system that has come out, even when they couldn't afford to buy them. Her 15 year old son recently had a birthday, and wanted to take some friends to an R rated movie to celebrate. She agreed and drove them all there. All her kids have to do to get what they want is whine that this is all they really want. (The only thing I want for Christmas is an X Box. That's all I want, so can you pleeaassseee get it for me?)

It's been hard for her when I haven't indulged her kids in the same way. For example, her kid tells her he reaaallllyyy wants to have a sleep over and play his new game. I tell my kid no, because I think he needs the sleep that weekend. Sometimes I think she would like to have said no, and when I say no it gives her an excuse. She hasn't learned the one fact that parenting takes BACKBONE! :)

I think one of the things that I learn from adversity is faith. I can't see the outcome, so I have to have faith that whatever happens is the will of the Lord. Faith is one thing that you can't learn by reading about it. You have to actually have to use it in order for it to grow. Dang it... lol

Inklings said...

Nice post and I agree with everything you said. I remember when Mom decided to start doing that. She had read an article about young people's suicide numbers reaching all time highs, and the psychologist (or whoever he was)who wrote the article said they didn't know how to deal with disappointment, so when hard times came, they killed themselves. This horrified mom. She was worried about you, because you were the youngest, had more material things than the older ones did, and were so smart and charismatic that she felt things were coming too easy to you. She didn't want you to develop into a person who couldn't handle adversity, yet there was not much adversity in your life to learn to handle. So she decided to create some.
I have never tried to do the same. I have seen challenges my kids have had, so I think life takes care of that for me.
But I do think that a parent who can't tell their kid no, and who thinks they have to get every thing they want, is seriously handicapping their child for life.
I am glad our mother taught us faith, so that we can get through things like this. Her battle with first, breast cancer, and then colon cancer, has been an example to us all for handling trials.
You, your wife, and kids will get through this. I feel like all will be well, and you will come out stronger for it.
I love you and your family and pray for you all of the time. Hang in there!

Nene said...

Well Mom always told me that the reason she said that to you (and did that to you) was because her pediatrician was the one that TOLD her to do it. She told her that since you were the baby of the family that she should CREATE situations of disappointment for you. I also tried to do this with Babs, and I would even repeatedly tell him that I was doing it. Every time he would complain about something in his life - and especially things that he complained about because of me - I would tell him that I was glad he was having a problem with that because I always looked for ways to make his life difficult because I wanted him to experience disappointment so he would know how to handle trials.

Hang in there!