This is a random time of year to be writing about New Year's Resolutions, but I heard something the other day that shook me awake. As an end-of-the-year class gift one of my girls' teachers received an assortment of gift cards from the class. Gift cards to Old Navy, Kohls, Starbucks...all kinds of places. The teacher held the gift cards to her chest and said, This is so very sweet. I made a New Year's Resolution not to spend any money on myself this year. She paused and collected herself. You parents will understand when your children are teenagers.
I've written a lot about children over the past few weeks, but this is a time in my life when there seem to be amazing parents and families all around me. As if every day I stumble across yet another positive example or inspiring instance of sacrifice and love. I feel myself being influenced by the goodness of others, and lately some things about my own parenting methods are stretching and deepening. Our children take so much away from us, but often these stories are told with the roll of eyes and a sardonic tone. It was so refreshing to hear a parent talk about a sacrifice that is being made willingly. Lovingly. She is a school teacher and a mother. Working hard to give her children opportunities that will enhance their talents and enrich their lives. So, she chooses not to shop, to go through the Starbucks drive-thru, and to be a careful steward of her money for the benefit of her children.
That is my kind of mother. It isn't the sacrifice that every mother will have to make, but it is a good reminder that we can take the initiative in providing a good life for our children and we can do so willingly. Happily. We need more resolute mothers!