A Nervewracking Lunch at Cabot Middle School North

February 6, 2010 by cloften  
Filed under Family and Parenting

If you told me right now that I had to speak to a group, it would be no big deal.  If you told me that group numbered in the 1000’s, I would be OK.  I would be a little nervous, because I want my talks/sermons to go well, but large group even super large group speaking doesn’t make me nervous.  (You always hear people talking about the fear of public speaking like it is what people fear most.  For real? Over death, long-term illness?)

I bring this up because yesterday afternoon, I am walking into my older daughter’s middle school with a Zaxby’s lunch for Maylee and me.  Suddenly as I am getting to the front door, I am overwhelmed with being nervous.  “I want this to go well.”  “I want her friends to like me.”  “I don’t want to embarass her.”  “I want her to really enjoy the time.”  “I want her to want me to come back.”

Some of this pressure is unique to me.  When you (and others, at least a couple of others) think of yourself as the funny one, there is some added pressure to that.  However, all of us should feel some pressure and be a little bit nervous.  You interacting with their friends matters to them.  You not embarassing them is important to them.  You want them to be proud of you, don’t you?

It’s easy for parents, especially dads, to adopt the attitude of, “I don’t care what his/her friends think about me.  My dad embarassed me and I’m passing it on.”  However, what would it be like if we put the same amount of energy and effort into these seemingly small events (that are big to them) that we put into big (big to us) events?  What would our kids think if they saw us doing our best to make these encounters the best they could be?  They would experience and feel and know what we want them to–they are incredibly loved and incredibly valuable to us.

(BTW, she came home saying, “My friends like you.”  Victory!)

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