I hate repeating myself. I've repeated this sentiment multiple times, so I must really mean it.
I was thinking about the yin and yang of the human race in different age groups. How older people who have experience in life have so much to offer younger people. In terms of advice, guidance, coaching. You can be book smart til the cows come home. But unless you've lived it, it's just theory.
This goes, without saying, for parenting.
I see our kids thinking the same way I did when I was young.
And my youth was painful for me.
I missed so many opportunities for adventures and relationships because I was fearful. And controlling. And a pleaser.
It was so easy a couple of years ago to tell my kids what to do, and they would do it. Now they are navigating their own, somewhat independent lives at school, church and soccer. Without my constant input, they are free to determine their own judgments of the exchanges they have in their environments.
If only they would listen to me. To their dad. To their teachers.
We've been there. We're the experts. At least to the 10 and under set.
And I realize, as long as humans have been on this earth, there has always been someone older. And someone younger. I know. Deep stuff. Stay with me.
In essence, each life is just a repetition of the one before. We're born, we live, we die. This is devastating to me. At a macro level, human life is just repetition. And I hate repetition. It's redundant. It begins the same, it ends the same. Pointless.
And then I realize. At a macro level, life is repetitive. But each life is a gift. It is something that has been given to us. For a purpose. Each life is lived uniquely through the personalities and experiences of the person gifted. Each life has been planned for since the beginning of time. Every birthday, freckle, sickness, marriage, grey hair, and job promotion has been created for each person, uniquely, for the ultimate purpose of glorifying God.
In the age of Facebook, blogging and GPS, it's easy to feel like a piece of sand on the beach. Every blog I am drawn to sounds like mine. (But better.) Everyone on Facebook has an opinion which can be grouped into easily defined categories. We no longer feel special to someone, exceptional in our field, we are cattle in the herd.
But I must remember that my life is a gift to me. It has been given to me. I compare to no one.
As much as the older set would like to pass on their experience to the younger guys, it can't be done. Not completely. We can choose to take input from those more experienced than us. We can give advice to those less experienced than us. Even if the advice is taken, the outcomes will be different. God has placed different circumstances and responsibilities on each of us.
We can't help but be without equal.
And so, with my altered outlook, I am awed by a God big enough to create and maintain the human race as a whole, throughout time. And I am emboldened by the gift He has given me, as well as everyone else, to be the person He designed me to be.
This is more than "I am special." This is "I AM HAND CRAFTED BY THE CREATOR OF THE UNIVERSE."
That is the reason I will let my girls lead their own lives and try not to micro-manage my husband's decisions. Their lives are gifts as well. I have no right to shape their gifts into ones that look like mine. I must learn to offer advice and then let them hash it out.
I am not the Giver of their gift.
I am just another recipient. And as unique and amazing as I am (hee), they are equally unique and amazing.
And that is enough for me.