With all the hustle and bustle of the last few weeks with school starting back, it's easy to forget what isn't directly impacting our own lives. But there’s one thing I'd like us to remember.
For the last 17 years, my life has been all about my children, my children's lives. I wish that I could tell you that I cherished every minute of my children’s childhood. That I made the most of every second that I was given. That I hugged them, kissed them, and loved them every chance I got. That I tried my hardest to be the best person I could possibly be for them.
That I showed them, rather than told them, what kind of person they should be, and what kind of person they could be. I wish I could tell you that I was never selfish, that I always put them, their needs, wants and desires ahead of my own. That I protected their curious, innocent, fragile eyes from things that would scare them, hurt them, haunt them, scar them or blind them. That I took a scary, cruel, sometimes ugly world and painted it for them with all things safe, sweet and beautiful, until I was sure they were strong enough to see it for what it is.
I wish I could tell you that I have no regrets, that I wouldn’t change a thing. That I wouldn’t want anything any other way. That I didn’t take one second, didn’t take one single thing, for granted. I wish I could tell you that I know in my heart that I did my job and that my job was done to the best of my ability.
But I can't.
What I can tell you is that I did the best that I could, with what I had, and who I was, at the time. I don't think any parent can look back and say with certainty that they have no regrets. I know I can't. I've made more mistakes than anything else over the years.
But this past summer has taught me something; it's not supposed to be about perfection. In the end, it's not about the credit we earn or the failures we’ve made. It's about the blessing of being a parent.
And as we settle into our routines and before we start complaining about the insignificant things that annoy us -- the policies and choices of the school, the teachers and the government that we may not agree with -- I'd like to remind everyone to remember those parents in our community who lost their child this summer, to remember the students who would have occupied those now-empty desks.
To remember them every time we feel sorry for ourselves, every time we feel irritated, stressed or angry. Because those parents would trade and give up anything to be in our shoes. Those lost student's would give anything to be in those now-empty desks.
In the end, it's about making the best of every minute we have left, and learning that the one's in which have passed, are in the past. It's what we do to make certain the next one won't be wasted, that we should worry about instead.