This past weekend we went up to St. Mary’s Mission on Red Lake Indian Reservation. This is the place that stole my oldest son’s heart several years ago when we went to volunteer there.
He found his purpose. His place. His why.
It changed his direction, his future. He now goes to college near there and is studying to be a teacher and hopes to teach there.
The other day we were talking about his experiences there working with the kiddos. Many have struggled. Living in poverty. Some with learning challenges. He basically said, “Mom, I meet them where they are at.”
I have to tell you, hearing that gave me such pride. And such relief. He learned a valuable lesson over these past 16 years. Sixteen years ago, my girls came to our family with hurts. Grief. Loss. Challenges. And I began a whole new way of parenting, meeting each of my kiddos right where they were at.
Let’s be honest. There were times that were chaotic. Out of control. Turbulent. And in those moments, on those days, I worried about how my boys were being impacted. Their relatively calm, peaceful world was no longer calm and peaceful.
But…my girls had been through so much in their short lives. We all needed to meet them where they were at. And so I taught my boys the lesson that we need to give grace to those around us. We need to understand that loss and trauma have a great impact on a child and it is our job to meet them where they are at.
This turned out to be a good thing...my boys were better off because I began parenting this way. Not only did I meet the girls where they were at, I also met the boys were they were at. And that was a much better way to parent.
To see my son carry this lesson with him and help these kiddos today is one of my proudest moments.
Way to go, Sam!