My children auditioned for a guest spot on a national radio show last weekend. You'd think they'd just been "discovered" and offered a multi-million dollar movie contract! All they can talk about is how cool it will be if one of them gets the part. They'd get to go in an airplane for the first time, meet the other characters in the show, see new places, etc. Then my 12-year-old son goes on a tangent about how, when he's famous someday, he's going to buy a Dodge Viper. My 7-year-old daughter, in true child-like simplicity, retorts, "I just want to get enough money for an iPod Touch."
The stars in their eyes are brighter than the noonday sun. I really don't want to put that light out, but how do I instill a sense of practicality in them as well? I love that my kids dream big dreams, but what will happen if/when they are disappointed?
I suppose every parent finds the delicate balance between dreams and reality a little tricky when it comes to their children. We want them to be ambitious, to have goals and priorities, and - most importantly - to believe in themselves and to believe that with God, ALL things are possible!
Maybe instead of dousing our kids with the cold water of reality and practicality, we need to encourage more dreams. The world will tell them enough that they can't do something, that they are not capable or not good enough to achieve something big. As parents, we should be telling our kids the opposite. They can do anything, they are capable, and they will achieve something big!
Maybe if we had held onto our dreams a little longer as children, they would have become our reality.
I think I'll hold onto my kids' dreams with them. Who knows? Maybe someday we'll ride together in my son's Dodge Viper while listening to my daughter's iPod Touch!