What I Want for My Kids

And it’s not happiness and a good job.

LOVE THEM. ALL OF THEM.

Ok you got me — I don’t actually have kids in the traditional sense of the word. In fact, I’m probably not having children (sorry Aunts who keep sending me photos of potential husbands). But it’s not a bad thing. For me, it’s a beautiful thing. Right now the world doesn’t need more children. It needs more people who will love OUR children.

I have a beautiful niece, an adorable nephew, and another niece and nephew on the way! (One is my best friend’s which is basically family). If every household was the beautiful picture we paint in fairytale books then maybe I’d have the freedom to build that myself. But the world is broken and I don’t believe my life is about my micro-happiness. It’s meant for something bigger. And that ‘bigger’ is loving like God loves. Some of the kids in my life come from great families, some of them were born into brokenness, and some of them are dealing with things we can’t see (or choose to ignore). No matter what — I want to love them. To fill in gaps, catch those who are falling, and lift others up. For me that means helping them build character traits and values that will help them through life.

To my nieces, my nephews, the students I teach, the campers I work with, and every child that passes through my life. I want more for you — I’m not going to tell you to do what you love and be happy. Because you’ll realize it’s not that easy and those are only byproducts of the following.

I want my kids —

To be resilient. To be strong. To field pain and hold firm. To think and challenge thought. To be curious and never stop figuring things out. To smile more, even if their insides don’t reflect that. To feel powerful in being vulnerable when they need to be. To open themselves up to feel things they can’t control — but to be strong enough to rise back up if they get knocked down.

To not let others dictate their worth. To be self affirmed in every way. To guard their heart, but be open to love. To give more than they take and never expect anything from anyone. To know early on that every human being will fail them — and removing people from pedestals will save them a lot of hurt and confusion. To love, even when they’ve been hurt. To have empathy for others and recognize the battles we all face.

To be the ones who stand out from the crowd. To hold onto their beliefs even if it’s not the “cool” thing. To understand that learning never stops. To see the beauty in the simple things and not get caught up in our material world. To stop during every day and understand the beauty of being alive.

To love those who are different and love those others deem unworthy. To try and fail and then try again. To take risks and deny limitations set on them. To find peace in living in a constant state of uncomfortableness. To push their boundaries and strive to be better everyday.

To help others and love the people that come into their lives. To know that they are perfect and whole just as God made them. To never need to rely on physical things to relieve their worries. To not go through life missing the whole point of it. And to always know that they are loved.

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