Parenting — An Act of Valor

“… people forget that often it is just such an exceptionally difficult external situation which gives man the opportunity to grow spiritually beyond himself.” — Victor Farnkl

Monday, 9:05 a.m.
Boulder, CO

In 2009 a mom died rescuing her young son from a ragging river.  She is survived by her son, a daughter and her husband.  A mother of two, a wife and a friend, she made the ultimate sacrifice to protect and rescue her son.

Last weekend my wife and I saw the recently released movie Act of Valor. Without giving away the ending (I hope), one of the Navy Seals made the ultimate sacrifice in the line of duty.  He selflessly gave his life for the lives of the men with him, for his country and for his family back home.

Fortunately most parents do not have to make the ultimate sacrifice to protect their children and their family.  Even so being a parent is, in my opinion, an Act of Valor.

Valor simply means…

COURAGE, BRAVERY.

Facing the uncertainty everyday brings when raising children, especially teenage children, takes courage and bravery.  Many of the risks and dangers teens face today were unheard of when most of us were teenagers.  The most our parents faced was maybe drinking or smoking pot or perhaps a teen pregnancy.

Today those dangers are just the tip of the iceberg!

When I speak with you, parents, I am continuously amazed at your strength and resiliency. Day in and day out you show up for your kids and do your best, with little to no acknowledgement.  You sacrifice other pursuits, other dreams, other rewards in order to provide for and protect your family.

You act and do your best in spite of your fear.

That’s what courage is. That’s what an Act of Valor is…

Taking action in spite of our fear.

It is easy to find valor when someone takes action in the line of duty. It is easy to recognize courage when someone stands up in the face of seemingly insurmountable odds. It’s not as easy to see courage in the mom or dad who shows up everyday. It’s not so easy to recognize valor in your neighbor unless you see it in yourself.

So, tonight, and every night, before turning in, I encourage each of you to look in the mirror and congratulate yourself for your Act of Valor today.  Being a parent can be grueling and thankless.  If you don’t acknowledge yourself and your efforts, WHO WILL? Make this a habit.

Victor Frankl wrote in Man’s Search for Meaning:

“… people forget that often it is just such an exceptionally difficult external situation which gives man the opportunity to grow spiritually beyond himself.”

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  • Anonymous

    A wonderful reminder of how valiant (that’s the adjective of valor, right?) parenting – and living – can be.  xox