On Sunday I had the distinct pleasure of watching three friends and thousands of other runners finish the TCS NYC Marathon. If you have not experienced this event, you should definitely add it to your 'To Do' list.
I was impressed by many things that day, but the word that comes to mind when I try to describe the marathon is resilience. 50,000 resilient runners pushing themselves to their physical, mental and emotional limits. Thousands of resilient spectators lining the 26.2 mile route to cheer on complete strangers, in spite of the tragic events that happened in NYC last week. The sense of pride and community was palpable everywhere we went.
In many ways it reminded me of our school - a place where we encourage our students to do their best, be their best and move beyond their comfort zone sometimes. Your children feel safe here and are surrounded by a supportive, caring community that cheers them on and guides them along the way. It's exciting to see them grow and develop into resilient young people that might someday finish the NYC Marathon or achieve greatness in other areas. They are 'training' for a wonderful future and we thank you for allowing us to be a part of this journey!
Children today have endless access to shopping, the ability to communicate across the world in an instant, and electronic entertainment coming from every direction. As busy parents, with so many options and devices at our disposal, it can be tempting to make our kids’ lives (and our own) very easy. Want that toy? Okay, you got it. (Better to avoid a melt down, right?)“Don’t handicap your children by making their lives easy.”
Yet, if we want our children to stand up to the inevitable challenges they will face in the future and keep going despite disappointment or frustration, we need to help our children develop resilience. This means they need to practice coping skills, and therefore need some challenges to practice with.
~ Robert A. Heinlein
After all, life is not about figuring out how to turn off a thunderstorm or switch on the sun – no matter how much we would like this to be possible. Our children will learn to be much happier, more resilient people, when they can enjoy the sunshine when it is around and dance in the rain when there is no other choice.
For more on this subject, read 25 Everyday Opportunities to Teach Your Child How To Be Resilient