I’m older than I’ve ever been in my whole life.
It seems to me that at different stages of our lives, we hear different messages hidden in the words that are spoken to us. We have heard similar sentences a million times before but now we HEAR something different.
I was eavesdropping (because I was standing close enough to hear) on a conversation between two women that vaguely knew each other from church. One asked, “How is your family?” The other replied with a laundry list of her three children’s academic and professional accomplishments.
I mean, she was proudly sharing these accomplishments. Her shoulders were back, her head was high… these accomplishments were parading out of her mouth like a fuckin’ peacock strutting it’s feathers. I kept hoping she would say something that mattered, but she never did….
Most of you know me well enough to know that I can’t keep my mouth shut. I leaned in, blew my eavesdropping cover and said, “but are they happy? Isn’t that all that really matters?” It was followed by, an awkward chuckle and the two ladies agreeing that they would see one another in church soon.
Academic and professional accomplishments are simply the result of what we are.
Debbie’s son, Mathew is unbelievably conscientious about his school work. He is achieving academic success now and will likely achieve professional success in the future.
That success will not describe him as a man, a husband, a father or a citizen. Instead, his determination to push himself, his ability to stay the course and the exceptionally high expectations that he places on himself morally and ethically, will. If he is achieving, he will be happy. When he is away at school and Debbie is asked about him, she will say, Matt is great, as long as he is challenged, he is happy. He is growing into an incredible man and I am so proud of him. The name of the school he attends, doesn’t speak these important words about her son.
I own a business. The years have been good and it is a successful business.
That speaks nothing of me as a woman. What does, is that I am married to my soul mate and I am passionate about life. I put 150% into everything that I do. I raised my daughters with a strong emphasis on self-esteem and it worked! My home is clean and I feel peaceful in it. My work fulfills me, challenges me and brings me joy.
Those are the things that REALLY matter!
What do you say when asked about your family?
XO, The Rock n’ Roll Doula