Interesting experience happened last night. I went to pick up my fourteen year old daughter after a church youth function where they had been playing basketball. I entered the church building and went straight for the gym, as I opened the door, all I could see was a man playing basketball with some kids. Thinking I couldn’t see her I headed off to look else where.
As I searched around the church, I became a little uneasy that I could not find her. It was not our routine for her to find a ride home; but there is always the first time so unable to locate her anywhere I headed back to the house. Many of you know that feeling when you can not find your child… a panic begins to swell inside your chest.
The house was dark and empty so I quickly turned back toward the church for a second look around. I made a few phone calls as I traveled to see if anyone else had seen her. The responses where yes, and that she had said she was waiting for me to pick her up. Why had I not seen her? Where was she? What was going on?
I could feel the flush of panic rising within. Quickly I realized that I was at “the Point of Decision” – you know those split seconds right before we react. Would I blow like a time bomb venting all these fearful emotions that were building up inside? Or would I “practice what I preach”? My own stress release prescription and an opportunity to make a positive change. The latter choice would create a much healthier me and happier child. Definitely a REAL change from how I had handled myself in earlier years with our older children.
The choice was easy. These fearful, raging emotions are destructive to both parties. First, they are harmful to the child because it tears at their self worth and creates a gap in the parent-child relationship and second, harmful to me because of the “after shock” of chemicals surging through the body. These chemicals are created from the negative emotions causing havoc to the body’s immune system.
For the third time I looked back into the gym, this time recognizing that she was playing basketball. I never saw her the first time, why? Because my mind did not picture her playing in that setting – with the guys. Don’t get me wrong, I know that girls like to play basketball with guys, but this little lady has always been quiet and in the back ground. She had never liked to stand out or be put on the spot and here she is holding her own. She was totally comfortable and in her element.
The BIG lesson I learned from this…… If your mind is not open to the possibilities right in front of you, you will never see them. So if your struggling with a situation, you might take a moment to create a whole new picture that is vivid and full of life. And never under estimate or set limits.