Tuesday, January 29, 2013

You can't have it all

That's true, you know, whether you choose to accept it or not. And for the most part, we don't like the fact. We don't like the idea that we can't do every single thing we think we want to. We don't like the fact we often have to choose between two good things. We don't like the fact that having made one choice, it affects what choices we are able to make in the future. Since we can't have it all, we try to do little bits of a lot of things instead of focusing on doing just a few things well.

And it is something we pass on to our children, too. I can't count the number of times I have been working with some children's activity where the children involved only show up to some of the events because they have multiple events for multiple activities scheduled on the same day. Why is it so difficult to tell the child they must pick one or the other, but they can't do both because they cannot be in two places at once? Why can we not model this for our children and show them responsible decision making?

What put this bee in my bonnet? Well, my brother works for Water for People. It is an NGO that builds infrastructure to bring clean water to developing countries. As a result, he gets to do some pretty adventurous traveling. I happened to see a notice that the organization shared about looking for a blogger to travel with the CEO and blog about what they see. I think this would be a completely amazing thing to get to do, but I didn't submit my name as a candidate. Besides the fact I'm related to a member of the organization, there is another reason I made that decision. Even if I was chosen, I just couldn't go. Not at this time in my life. There are too many people who need me to be here for them.

Depending on how this is read, it could sound as though I feel trapped by my children... tied down... wishing I had a real life, one that involved adventurous travel. But I don't feel that way at all. Disappointment and regret are not necessarily that same thing. I may be a little disappointed that I can't be considered for an all-expenses paid trip that I would get to write about, but I don't regret the reasons behind it. In fact, I would choose them again every time. I like to travel and I like to write, but I love my children. And it's not as though I haven't been able to travel and write with my children before.

And I do have a real life. I don't know where the idea that a real life happens outside of ones home began, but it is ridiculous. In fact, I can't think of a place where real life happens more than at home. That is where we do our real living. It is the lessons we learn at home which determine our success in the wider world. And I get to be the one to teach those lessons. It is not an unimportant job. It is certainly far more important than any office-type jobs I've ever had.

Plus, I can always hold out the hope that someone will decide they want to read about the adventures of travelling to unusual places (or even usual ones) with many children. If just going to the grocery with everyone in tow is an adventure, just think what travelling the world would be like...
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Oh, and don't forget to enter the book giveaway. Since the current tally of comments stands at 4, your odds are very, very good at this moment that you'll win. A. read the book and said is was good and recommends it to you.

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