It’s true. One day you’re holding a baby in your arms, and then the next you land where I am today – watching your child walk across the stage at her high school graduation, and entering into a new chapter of her life away from home. It does feel like a flash. How do you plan for bittersweet life transitions like this?
Reflecting back, there were many choices made along the way that helped create a path paved with options for her future. So much planning and preparation is required in raising a child. Ultimately, it is how we use resources under our control that can increase the likelihood of creating opportunities down the road for our child. Those resources include our energy, care, time, money, skills and experience. Success can come when all of these resources are carefully balanced.
The Next Stage
As I think about this next stage in life, I am delighted to see my daughter become a kind, independent and mature young woman. When that bittersweet moment arrives as I drop her off at college, I hope she remembers these life lessons my husband and I have imparted to her:
Only spend what you have. Living on modest means early on will give you freedom and options later.
- Be grateful for what you have and, for those things you have, use them wisely.
- Success is not measured by status or what car you drive. It is determined by who you are, how you treat others, and how you lead your life.
- Pay attention to the things that matter, and don’t get distracted away from your goals.
- You are part of a community, so remember to always give back and support those in need.
Shifting from an active participant to a spectator in her life will be challenging; however, I trust she is ready to handle what life throws her way.
I also share with her three things that I have always carried with me, and hope that she carries them forward as well: Be brave, be wise and be kind.