Parenting is difficult and that is why children don’t do it.
It is difficult to wake children up when they want to sleep. It is difficult to get them out of bed, to get them to brush their teeth, to get them to bathe, and get dressed when they would rather not. It is difficult to make them eat food that is good for them instead of the food that they would rather eat.
It is difficult to get their bags packed, to get them out of the door on time, and to get them to go to activities that are for their betterment. It is difficult to keep them going, to follow through on the commitment, and to not quit when they want to quit. It is difficult to help them with all of the things they need help with in order to do all of the things that they need to do to become the best people they can be.
It is difficult to teach them to clean up after themselves, every time, and to not do it for them because it is faster. It is difficult to teach them patience and manners and kindness and generosity. It is difficult to avoid the temptations of distraction, bribery, and acquiescence.
It is difficult to do what is best and not what is easiest. It is difficult to constantly choose self-sacrifice over selfishness. It is difficult to be a parent and that it why it is our responsibility, not theirs.
Holistic Budo: As it is in budo, so too it is in life. As it is in life, so too it is in budo.
Robert Van Valkenburgh is co-founder of Taikyoku Mind & Body and Kogen Dojo where he teaches Taikyoku Budo and Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu
Artwork by Ana, except where otherwise noted
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