At that moment, I wanted so badly to turn back the clock.
Of course, if I had been paying more attention to the clock, I wouldn’t be in this mess — feeling this dreadful, guilty feeling in the pit of my stomach.
My daughter, Molly, who was four at the time, had been taking a week-long art class at our local cultural center. All week, she talked about a big art show the last day of class. She was so excited about her project.
“You’re going to be there, right? All the parents are invited!”
My husband and I had fully intended to be there. On the day of the art show, we had planned to be there right when it started at 11:45. I can’t remember now what happened, but the morning didn’t go as planned. We lost track of time and pulled into the parking lot at 12:15.
Molly was waiting in the empty parking lot with her teacher, head down, holding her art project.
“I was the only one who didn’t have parents there,” she said as she choked back tears.
My heart still aches at the thought of it, even 12 years later. She wasn’t mad. She was deeply disappointed.
Humanly, I never want to disappoint my kids. I hate that feeling of knowing that what I have to offer is going to fall short of what they expect or need. My offerings are often humble — and imperfect.
On that day of the art show, I couldn’t turn back time … but I could give a genuine apology.
When I listen to one of my children share their problems, pain and struggles, I long to fix it.
I can’t find the right words to make everything better … but I can give them my love, understanding and prayers.
When my son is frustrated with the seemingly endless treatments he has to do for his cystic fibrosis, I long to heal his disease.
I don’t have a cure, but I can give him hugs and validate his feelings.
Yes, I am a sorely imperfect parent. And I am so glad. Each time I disappoint, each time I can’t meet their need, it gives me an opportunity to point them up to the Parent …
Who always remembers,
Who has all wisdom,
Who has the power to heal the body and soul.
He may not always deliver in the way we expect, but He never disappoints.