I stopped by Eldest’s room late last evening to answer a question that I asked myself almost exactly sixteen years ago. Today is her birthday and on the morning that she was born, I looked at this infant – graced with more hair than I had and a clear resemblance to her mother – and wondered what she might look like when it came time for that milestone, her driver’s license.
That was exactly 5840 days ago and at that moment, it really seemed like forever. There were so many things to work through and learn such as feeding and changing this child, and managing to get her down for sleep without having to depend upon her mother. But with time and persistence, I learned and the process still continues albeit with a different bent. Should I rebid the auto insurance now that I’m going to have a teen driver on the policy and what discounts can I get for driving lessons? What are the household driving rules, which are in addition to the road rules?
The point is that time does indeed pass and your child will reach adulthood, with or without you. But the quality of that adulthood is also however, largely dependent upon your efforts and imputs. I guarantee that there will be mistakes and that you’ll have regrets but children have a wonderful ability to forgive, one that many of us have lost. Learn from the mistakes and rectify them but by all means, stay involved and engage the kids in all aspects of their lives. Regardless whether you’re a father or a mother, raising kids is like one long golfer’s Mulligan. There will be mistakes but there will be opportunities to make them right if you pay attention and stay with it.
As I finish this note, I’m wondering what she’ll look like on her wedding day. But there’s still a great deal to do until we get to that point.