trust the JOURNEY
“Sometimes not getting what we want is a wonderful stroke of luck.” – Dalai Lama
There is comfort in knowing that the path we’re on is meant and that when things don’t go as planned, we are being led in the right direction. The experiences we have daily are developing us to grow, learn and become who we are all destined to be.
Life is full of choices. When we were children, we imagined being firemen and veterinarians. Our desire for what we want to be changes as easily as the time of day, and by the time we are grown up, the job we end up with is often greatly different from our childhood imaginings.
As parents, we are often guilty of having specific desires for our child’s life path as well. We want high paying jobs, perfect grades, or for our children to possess a rare or amazing talent.
It’s important to remember that our kids are very special for who they are. Where they are in life, what they want to be, and where they are going, are all part of their journey. Trusting in them, and what they want to be in life can be very difficult for parents, but it is important to give them the support they need on their own path.
support your child in their journey
If your younger child is hardly ever seen outside of a tootoo and desperately wants dancing lessons, don’t sign them up for karate because you think it is a better choice. This especially goes for stereotyping, such as when the child in the tootoo is a boy, or the kid with the power tools is a girl. This means being there for your child even when what they want is at odds with what you want.
We don’t get to choose the personality of our children, but we can accept their personality and help them reach their goals. Even when those goals might seem silly or unconventional to us.
help them understand when things don’t go as planned
The world can be a difficult place to live in. Sometimes we don’t achieve those big dreams. Sometimes we lose a loved one, or didn’t win the big game. Children can struggle to understand why these things happen, especially if there was no particular reason for why. This too is part of accepting the journey.
When disappointments happen, they can shape who you are. That experience is no less a part of you than the big wins and the happy moments. Your child may not appreciate being informed that having to move away from their best friend is part of their journey, but helping them to put faith in their path in life might help encourage them.
Staying flexible as a parent can be difficult, especially when life throws curveballs at your beloved child, or they are intent on a path that isn’t your own heart’s desire. In the end, the path they choose was the one meant for them and having faith that their path is the right one can be a liberating experience all its own.
books that help children trust the journey
The following children’s stories share various journeys of leaving, loss, and venturing to new and unknown places. Good-Bye, 382 Shin Dang Dong by Frances Park tells the story of a little girl and how she must come to terms with leaving her family home in Korea to move and become accustomed to a new life in Massachusetts. Wherever You Are: My Love Will Find You by Nancy Tillman is a lovely board book that lets your child know that even if the ones who love them very much cannot be with them physically their love is always there no matter where they go. The Journey Trilogy by Aaron Becker is a compilation of beautifully illustrated wordless books that takes its readers through a spectacular journey of a young girl’s imagination.
Please enjoy this free Tot Tails coloring page to help share this message with your child.