You never appreciate what your parents have done for you until you become a parent yourself. I am not sure what I was thinking, but I thought parenting would be easier than it has been. For me, it exposes all the areas in my life that may be lacking and may need some time for me to address.
I know this sounds dumb, but even before I had any kids, my kids were teaching me things. I vividly remember seeing a child throwing a tantrum at Target and thinking to myself, “My kid will never act like that.” Which uncovered pride in my heart. Now that I have kids, when I see something like that I first am empathetic to the parents and then I think of how I would react when (not if) my child acts like that.
Parenting has taught me so much, and I am constantly learning. I am so grateful to have my 3 children in my life and I am thankful they are gracious with me as I try to be the best father I can be.
Along those same lines, here is a story about one of my friends, Dylan. Dylan has a two-year-old daughter named Nelly. Nelly loves many things but the thing that she loves the most is blueberry muffins. After work one day Dylan decided to surprise Nelly and get her a blueberry muffin. When he got home he knew it was close to dinner so he decided to wait to give Nelly her blueberry muffin until after dinner.
But as all good fathers do, he decided to tell Nelly that he had brought her home a surprise and she could have it after she ate her dinner. Nelly, was obsessed with the surprise, so much so that she wasn’t going to eat her dinner. She wanted the surprise and she wanted it now.
Dylan and his wife pleaded with Nelly to eat her dinner because they knew that if she didn’t eat before the blueberry muffin, she wouldn’t eat her dinner. After many tears and a lot of encouragement, Nelly ate the last bite of her dinner and Dylan got to present her with the biggest blueberry muffin she had ever seen.
The wait was worth it.
How does this relate to finances?
I often want to rush and rush to get to the end goal and in the process, I lose the enjoyment of being in the moment. I am obsessed with the “surprise” and what I am trying to accomplish and I forget to enjoy the very thing that is in front of me.
I am convinced that if we are good stewards of the small things then we will be entrusted with bigger things, maybe even bigger than we can imagine! Our challenge as business owners as well as individuals is not to cut corners or try to bypass the very thing that will give us the experience that helps us to manage the big things. It also takes encouragement, tears, and hard work, but in the end, it is so worth it.
Our finances are in different places for each and every one of us, but I am challenging myself, as well as you, to enjoy the place you are at. Stay present and fight the urge to wish for something you don’t have. Take time to write down what you are struggling or frustrated with and take time to think about the good things that have come from it or the things you have learned.
Know that growth is hard but those experiences have made me who I am.