When your children are born, all you want for them is…well, everything. You want to protect them from every possible bump, bruise, scratch, insult, injury, sorrow.
As they begin to grow, you realize as a parent that you can’t actually protect them from the world, from life.
But your initial hope remains true. When all is said and done, what you want for your children is happiness.
Every parent has thought it. Every one has said it, “I just want my children to be happy.”
What that means is something different from family to family, and it changes over time.
But in the end, if we can distill our deepest and truest wish for our children, it is this:
“I wish you a life that brings you pleasure. I wish you a job that makes you feel good about yourself. I wish you friends who laugh with you and share your best and worst times. And more than anything, I wish you love.”
We want our children to find their loves. To find someone who brings out the best in them. To find someone who is their own best with our child beside them.
Of course we may not realize it when the kids are small, and we may not say it out loud when they are older, but we also want them to find someone that we can love, too.
As parents, we wish for our children a life of equal parts adventure and predictability. We wish for them to grow and learn and get stronger every day.
When my three children were little, I imagined them eating good food around their own tables. All of them have achieved this. I desperately wanted them to find a community of like minded souls who would support them, challenge them and laugh with them. All three have that, too.
And I wish, most of all, that all of them would find a solid life partner, like mine, who would be there through all of the financial crises, the health issues, the emotional swings and the changing times. I wished each of them a partner who desired them, cared for them, missed them, stored up stories of the day to tell them.
All of mine have also, miraculously, found partners who bring out the best in them, who love them deeply, and who we love as well.
That’s a mother’s best wish. It’s any parent’s best wish.
“I just want my child to be happy.”
We all say it.
We all mean it.
Last weekend, my youngest child, my sweet baby, proposed to his own true love. We were there to share the excitement. She is the one who fills every one of our wishes for our boy.
Sometimes life give us exactly what we want, exactly what we desire.
This was one of those times.
Yay, Tim and Sweens!!!!! You guys make dreams come true, and not only for each other!!!!!
Before he proposed to Sweens, Tim came with me to see my 88 year old Mom. She was married to my Dad for 58 years. They had one of those magical and loving marriages that you only read about. She said to Tim, upon hearing his news, “I wish for you the same kind of relationship that Grampa and I had. We were best friends and we always looked out for each other.”
To every parent out there, I hope you all have happy children. There’s nothing more important, and nothing more gratifying.