R words... Resolutions, Rebalancing, Rebooting

Hello All!

It has been a while.  I have been carrying a notebook around in case I had any ideas or notions of what to write about.

In the last month we all started a new year.  A time of new beginnings, new opportunities, and new challenges.  I like to think that most of what life presents are opportunities, some better than others. That is where the title comes in, and is what I am working on.

At the beginning of any new year, we hear about all sorts of New Year's resolutions.  It has become a constant in society, lots of talk around the start of each new calendar year.   People make resolutions, plans on how to change and improve their lives.  I do too.  I try to sit down somewhere near the beginning of the year and think about how I want to evolve.  I like the word evolve.  It is a verb that means to" develop gradually and naturally; devise; unfold, open out".

I went to a conference in November, and had the chance to see an educator and presenter that I admire. She spoke to the fact, that although she loved what she had been doing, it was now time to "reboot".  She said she came up with that idea, instead of retiring.  Retiring sounded too staid and old to her, and I have to say I grabbed onto the idea.

If we are lucky enough to hang around a long time, we will get a lot of chances to "reboot".  At the place I am at in life, I am now more of an advisor and hopefully role model to my/our children.  As I have said, they are all grown and live on their own and have their own lives.

Recently I had the chance to reconnect with a person I  had not seen for a while. She chose to share with me all the challenges, changes and new opportunities she had and is experiencing in her own life.  I was honored and thrilled that she shared her ideas and thoughts with me.  She is an example of a woman who is rebalancing and rebooting and evolving on terms that matter to her, even if her Mom is not able to support her at this time.  I thought a lot about that.

Each of us, no matter where we are along the spectrum of life, want to be accepted and validated and truly loved unconditionally by our parents.  I know that for some people that is easier than for others.  I guess the conundrum of parenting is that we truly have to demonstrate that our love is  unconditional.   I like the older version of the movie "Dirty Dancing" with Jennifer Grey.  She has a falling out with her father at one point in the movie, and she says to him "If you love me, you have to love all of me", and also says something to the effect that he can not just love her for the parts he likes, but also for the parts he does not.

A few years ago, when I began my first attempts at writing this blog, I proposed that unconditional love was one of the tenets of good parenting.  I have to say I believe that even more today.

This past weekend, we had the chance to attend a wedding in Los Angeles (why I came back to Chicago is beyond me with all this cold!)  While we were there, we got to spend time with our kids, and Max and our nephew and many of Anne's friends.  During that time, we heard about what they were all doing, and how their lives were evolving.  We got to listen.

After Bill and I got back, we were talking about how interesting it is to see what people evolve into and how they design their lives.  Honestly, it is hard to not want to tell your kids what to do, but I guess that is just it.  We have to take the opportunity to evolve and continually try to give our kids, no matter what age they are, the gift of unconditional love.  I think it pays off....

When we landed and I turned my phone on, I had 3 great messages, one from each of our kids.  They were thanking us for just that, loving them well enough to allow,  support and encourage them to be who they need to be.

O.K. !

So far, so good.  I am working hard on this whole rebooting thing. Knowing that my goal now is to love my kids unconditionally enough to let them be.  Let them be, so they can become more of their own true selves each year.  It's hard!  So, I am being thoughtful about resolutions, and rebalancing and continually "rebooting".

Happy evolving!

Until next time,