2012-07-23 015

From start to finish with these kiddos

When documentaries and goals collide!

Ever since we finished season two of Downton (for the third time), there has been a gap in our show watching. So for the past several weeks, I have turned my attention to a few documentaries that have distracted me enough to be within days, days of the U.S. premiere of season three of Downton Abbey. They aren’t new films, but they had some bits of wisdom that reminded me of important virtues that I want to keep in my life not just this year, but always. Plus, if there is a way I can get blood out of a turnip I will darn well try.

Jiro Dreams of Sushi – I think I want to be Jiro. He really is adorable…until you actually watch more than five minutes of this documentary and then you realize that he is super disciplined and spends every waking moment trying to make better what he has done for the past seventy five years. Adorable fades pretty quickly and is replaced with respect and thoughts that my life looks more like the dust swirling around the Charles Schultz character PigPen than said adorable Japanese sushi expert.

I won’t chronicle the film, you could just watch it, but there is a part in the movie where they speak to our throw away, fast food kind of culture. We don’t like a job, we change it. We don’t like the weather where we live, we move. We don’t like our boss, we quit. No judgment here, I’ve done all three but, there is something to be said about sticking around in an effort to better ourselves or better our craft whatever that may be. Now Jiro found his craft at a very young age and some of us don’t quite hit our stride until much later but once we find it we should not let our anyone else determine our next steps or our path. There are lots of variables here, but the bottom line is that discipline seems to be a fading practice. So, goal number one is born (rather, reborn)…be more disciplined. More specifically, read my bible every day, apply its principles and write daily (journal, blog, whatever).

Buck (Buck Brannaman) – This is probably the most helpful piece of parenting information I have ever encountered. Buck Brannaman is a horse trainer. Yes, horse trainer. Although this film is about starting a young colt (that is the process by which a person seeks to ride a young horse for the first time, with a saddle and such), it is ridiculously parallel to the way we raise our children. We can break them or we can start them. Buck says that the whole relationship with the horse is about respect and that “respect is not about fear, it’s about acceptance.” I respect my children immensley and my hope is that they respect me too. Do not misread this, I am not a loosey goosey parent who thinks that kids earn my respect by getting to choose everything they want. Yes, I offer them choices but I’m no free wheelin’ have whatever you like kind of parent either. You can get way more out of a person you respect than a person you fear. Fear only motivates for a time and then the horse rebels…or bites a trainer’s head (you gotta see this film). And whether it is a child or a horse, respect is a two way street.

So goal number two: continue the path to starting my children. Stay mindful that breaking them will only lead to rebellion and bad behavior (which they are predisposed to anyway). They can only respond to that which we have given them until they are big enough to apply it on their own.

First Position – Oh my is ballet a beautiful thing!! I really love seeing beautiful things with my eyes. Art, ballet, theater, symphony orchestra…I am a renaissance girl through and through, although I can do none of the aforementioned. How cruel to love these things and be completely inept! But, enough about me. This documentary is as much about beauty as it is about passion and drive. These kids (oh my, they are kids!) are so incredibly driven and passionate about ballet. It is all they eat, sleep and do. It is one of those things where if your heart grabs a hold of it, it is not gonna let go until it is finished. These dancers only have one option. There is no plan B.

Oftentimes, I will doubt my abilities which leads to a sort of apathy on my part. There is no apathy for these young ballet dancers. There is only what must be done. Before I had kids, I am sure this part of me existed. Goal number three: reclaim my passion and drive to believe in the things I know myself to be gifted in. To be confident in the things I know to be God given abilities and to not let down until it is finished.

Think I can get all this done this year? Ha! Not my intention. I hope to just build upon these virtues in addition to the personal goals I set for myself this year. Time to get going.


Categories: All The Rest

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1 reply

  1. I love reading your blog and have passed it along to friends who are currently dealing with postpartum depression. I had my own bout with each kid that was not as awful as you described but was enough to give me great compassion for those who deal with depression. Thanks for your encouragement on Facebook. It meant a lot!

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