Sunday, November 26, 2006

Sunday Food for Thought - Teach Your Children Well

Video: Crosby Stills and Nash - Teach Your Children

I love my daughter. She and I travelled down a very long and tough road as we struggled with my drug addiction until she was 9 years old and I finally got clean and sober - some 20 years ago now. I was so lost and so defeated when I thought I had damaged her permanently. It took a lot of healing over the years - a lot of pain and sorrow, a lot of anger and much life packed into a very short time.

Somewhere in there though, I had managed to teach her my core values: charity, compassion, tolerance, justice, equality and love. Those things were never lost to me. They were covered by the mask of addiction and as we made our way back together, we had a foundation that transcended the fog and eventually overcame the distractions of any given day.

When I called her yesterday, she told me she'd been in a car accident. She'd slid out of control on an icy patch of highway and ended up lodged in some pine trees with my baby grandson. My heart skipped a few beats.

They're both all right and she found help quickly. (Tears fill my eyes as I write this).

No matter what, she will always be my little girl - that adventurous, free-spirited, challenging, fiery, curious, and stubborn little girl - who has become such a fine woman today in spite of all of the odds stacked against her early in her life.

There are times when I think I could have taught her so much more but I do know this: I taught her what I was able to and her passion for life is so much more than I ever could have imagined.

She was telling me yesterday, after recently returning from Mexico and since being in the Dominican Republic a few years ago, that she's going to look into ways for her family to help out the poor in other countries by joining a group to build homes or to provide some other charitable form of work in order to help lift someone out of the world of poverty. That's a challenge with an 11 year old and a baby who's almost 1 year old, but that's the kind of person she is and her mate lives on the same wavelength. They care.

So, despite everything that went so horribly wrong way back when, I know now that her spirit shines so bright that I must have taught her something right. And that is very humbling indeed.

I couldn't be more proud of her and although I'm still certainly nowhere near being mother of the year, I sure can say that in my eyes - she is.

I love you, sweetie. You'll never know just how much you've taught me.

Please drive carefully...

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