This past week, my son Jack posed a surprising question while driving in the car to visit my brother. Asking “Dad, what would you do if you only had one week left to live?”
“Spend time with you, Hugo, Ingrid and the rest of our family.” Was the quick answer. An answer I’m sure most people would repeat all over the world if asked the same question. This innate desire to be with our friends and family knowing the end of the story is near crossing all borders and cultures.
I love watching Jack and Hugo grow and express themselves in ways I may have never imagined for them. Hearing them ask questions that surprise me. It makes me feel proud to be a guide on their path hopefully staying conscious enough to not stifle them along the way with a “you should do this or that” presence. Instead learning every step of the way.
I remember reading the following insight from Kahlil Gibran’s book the Prophet years ago. Making a mental note to embrace this point of view when helping raise my children. Today, I hope it serves you as it continues to serve me.
“Your children are not your children.
They are the sons and daughters of Life’s longing for itself.
They come through you but not from you,
And though they are with you yet they belong not to you.
You may give them your love but not your thoughts,
For they have their own thoughts.
You may house their bodies but not their souls,
For their souls dwell in the house of tomorrow,
which you cannot visit, not even in your dreams.
You may strive to be like them,
but seek not to make them like you.
For life goes not backward nor tarries with yesterday.
You are the bows from which your children
as living arrows are sent forth.
The archer sees the mark upon the path of the infinite,
and He bends you with His might
that His arrows may go swift and far.
Let your bending in the archer’s hand be for gladness;
For even as He loves the arrow that flies,
so He loves also the bow that is stable.”
Here’s another surprise Jack gifted me this week. A wonderful illustration of his I could look at for days.