Awakening at the Zoo
We exponentially grow when we learn and act on “what we don’t know we don’t know”. I always advocate getting in your kids’ element whenever possible, not only because of the kid bonding but also because of the parent connecting opportunities. Putting yourself in places to learn from others who have gone before you gives you the advantage of absorbing the wisdom from their learning curve.
I had such an awakening at our traditional end-of-school-year field trip where 5th graders pair up with kindergarten buddies to explore the zoo. Teamed up with two veteran 5th grade moms with 12 kids between them, their 5th graders being their youngest, I got more than just an animal education in our short three hours tooling around the snakes, tarantulas, and gorillas.
As an apostle in the Kid for Jesus virtue building program, which gives kids and parents tools to live Christian charity in school and home, the conversation turned to some of the charity challenges creating notoriety for that particular 5th grade cohort. Curious about what was happening and what could be done to stop it, I queried the moms who shared openly their experience with cyber-bullying and other aggressive behaviors. Texting seemed the root of the ugliest issues.
Hearing that bullies sent anonymous texts like, “No one likes you. Why don’t you kill yourself,” or argumentative name-calling text dialogues or sexually inappropriate texts appalled my Catholic school mom ears. In the spirit of charity we were able to discuss the issue and what needs to happen to improve it without mentioning a single name of the supposed perpetrators.
Armed with my advance parent training, I went home to my kids to discuss why we must have virtue when we use any kind of technology, and what can happen when we don’t.
Similar processes can be used to grow in our marriages when we expose ourselves to couples more advanced than us, to glean tips to help us develop exponentially.
The Catholic Women’s Guide to Healthy Relationships Tip: Put yourself around others with more experience and success in their marriage, family, and work lives, so you can benefit from their investment.