Thursday, June 9, 2016

opportunities to fail...

Sometimes it saddens me that everything academically has always come so easy to my Caroline.  She was that kid who was reading the Bible fluently at age 3.  She's currently devouring the old Nancy Drew novels in less than 3 hours each. (!!!)  She's at the top of her class, and she's just a really bright little girl.

Sounds like a great thing, doesn't it?  In many ways, it is.

But since everything has always come easy for her, Caroline has come to expect things to always be that way.   And if something doesn't come easy, she tends to crumble and run off.  Perfectionism often keeps her from trying, and her mistakes can produce much anger and frustration within herself.

Thankfully, she has a mama that shares her struggles of perfectionism, though our responses to it are often opposite.  (I kill myself striving to get something just right, and after she explodes in anger, she flees the scene crying in total defeat...)  And for all the hugs and Gospel talks she and I have had over the years about accepting and laughing at our own mistakes, perfectionism still maintains its solid grip upon both of our hearts.

So, being the loving parent that I want to be, I think it's important that my daughter has opportunities to fail.  I don't think I need to shield her from mistakes and challenges just because she's afraid of them.  If anything, I need to provide her with more places to safely make them and work through to overcome them.

And since maybe school isn't that place right now, we're taking dance.

dance buddies
I enrolled Caroline in a jazz dance class knowing she'd be the youngest kid, knowing she'd be the only one without prior dance training, and knowing she'd have a great time, but have to work hard to keep up.

She's really liking it!  And she's really doing well at it, too.

I feel like it's not only teaching her skills of coordination and musicality, but it's giving her a fun opportunity to work through some deeper level life skills.

She can't run away when it gets hard.
She can't emotionally unload on her teacher if she doesn't understand something.

Instead, she has to keep trying, keep going, and do the best she's able to do.

So I can't tell you how proud I was of her at her second dance recital ever.  She felt unprepared and knew she wouldn't be "perfect" at this difficult routine.  She was super nervous.  And yet, she did a WONDERFUL job!...

I'm so proud of her confidence.

I'm so proud of her courage.

God fashioned her so uniquely and specially.

She has no idea how many mistakes she'll continue to make her whole life long.

And yet, she's got parents and a heavenly Father who will keep on loving her in spite of them all.  That's what grace is all about- despite all of our failures, that love never stops and runs away.

It keeps on keeping on.

And I'm so, so thankful she is mine.

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