As The General Manager Of My Family, I Am Glad That I Practice Meditation

Parenting two teenage girls can be tricky.
Due to their young ages,  they (fortunately) haven't yet made terrible mistakes in life.
I, on the other hand, have stumbled through enough life experiences that have given me the credentials to tutor them.

That they have not done much bumbling is the very reason that it is more difficult for them to accept recommendations.

Kika is 15.
She is on the right track academically, but I find myself worrying about how she navigates the social web of high school life.
I toggle between freaking out when she does not follow my instructions and understanding that
some of life's lessons must be learned first hand.

When Kika opens up about things that bother her,  I listen but I also take much of it with a grain of salt.
I tend to loop everything as overwhelm and the newness of high school.
I give her advice based on my life experiences in the hopes that she will be spared teenage angst.
Recently she started complaining about her leg hurting.
I didn't really believe that she was injured but in the interest of getting to the bottom of her pain, she was brought to a doctor.
(This is the second doctor she has seen since high school started btw, but that is another story)
Anyhow, it turns out--this second time there really was something wrong. 
She has a stress fracture that she actually won one cross country race with and although it is not a serious injury, it has ended her freshman high school basketball career before it even started.

Prayer and meditation allow me to see Kika's stress fracture as a gift because:
a)  Her having to sit out basketball this year allows us to reclaim weekends for more family time and
b) Her actually having a stress fracture has taught me the value of really listening to my daughters.

When my daughters tell me their feelings,
I must tune in and understand that their experiences are their reality.
I must encourage them to be authentic.
I must allow them to be themselves instead of forcing them into the role of being the kind of daughters that I would like to show off  them to be.
(uuhm, within reason of course...grinding and twerking are off the table)
I can do my best to guide them and set boundaries for their light to shine but I can do nothing more except have faith and accept that with the best intentions in our hearts, that all will be well.

Gabi is almost 13.
For the most part she manages to fly underneath the radar.
(yes typical second-born)
Considering she is not very competitive, she has had her own victories in cross country and volleyball.
Without the pressure of scrutiny she is finding her own mojo and coming alive, both academically and physically.
I have not had to worry much about Gabi, that is, up until she ended up in the ER the other night.

Gabi was playing at a friend's house last saturday when she and her friends decided to try an internet thumb-blowing hyperventilating game to see if they could make themselves faint.
Gabi with her new found success, successfully fainted but ended up bumping her head when she fell to the floor.
When she woke up seconds later, she was nauseous, had a headache and she noticed that her vision was partially obscured.
As she told me this on the drive home, I struggled to remain calm.
But after she started vomiting once we got home (would it be wrong to admit how grateful I was that she did not throw up in our car?)
I knew that a trip to the ER was inevitable.
With God's grace, the only thing Gabi suffered from was a mild concussion.
It could have been so much worse.

Prayer and meditation allow me to see Gabi's concussion as a gift because:
a) It alerted us to the level of curiosity and stupidity that she and her group of under-the-radar friends are in--and it opened up the conversation about--well,  stupid sh** kids do,  that can end badly.
b) It reminded me that experience is the best teacher, and if the experience does not kill you, consider yourselves blessed.

This portion of parenting may be challenging, but it is certainly strengthening my prayer muscles.
I am almost to the point of being able to surrender. (Almost)
I pray for everything.
Last night, Steve (I think mockingly--I am not certain) requested that we pray that the Steelers win.
So Gabi and I prayed.
After they lost rather badly, Steve pointed this out. (I think mockingly--I am not certain)
I said to him,

Our ability to pray is not so that we can manipulate God.
We pray so that we learn to change ourselves into being more trusting and accepting of God's Will.

My daily practice of prayer and meditation is changing my insides in ways that astound me.
(although it may not yet be obvious to the naked eye)
It is making me trust that there is a God that lovingly paints the big picture of our lives.
It is slowly but surely giving me the ability to walk into that big picture without fear.