Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Learning from Our Children

My daughter Brianna, now 17, was on the tennis team this year. The girls won Districts and won their first round at Regionals. They were playing a really talented team that they had lost to earlier in the year. They had won 3 games and lost 3 games. It all came down to Brianna's game. Everyone was watching. If she won, the girls would go on to States. If she lost, their season was over. Brianna lost her first set in a tie breaker and then went on to lose her second set. There season was over. Brianna cried in her daddy's (also her coach's) arms.

We went out to dinner following the tournament and the waitress could see Brianna was wearing her tennis gear and had the more telling signs of a girl worn out from 4 grueling hours of tennis. She ask how Brianna had done. Brianna could have said, "I not only lost but I let down my entire team!" But she didn't. She said with a big grin on her face, "I played my best tennis ever!"

We can't lose when we play our "best tennis ever," but how long does it take for us to figure that out? Brianna's one comment resonated with me, reminding me again in that special way only our children can, that this life is not about meeting every goal we set for ourselves but all about how we are playing the game. Our goals and ambitions are important. But we must remember (and remember to teach our children) that "playing our best," and experiencing life for all it is worth in this moment is really where happiness lives.
By Kathryn Kvols, Author of Redirecting Children's Behavior and founder of INCAF


  1. I assume you meant "We can lose" as opposed to "We can't???"

  2. Loved this! Great reminder from a mature young lady who 'gets it'! ;-) Thanks for sharing!

  3. Reminds me of the saying - life is all about the journey, not the destination!