How many times have we heard as parents “when I grow up I am going to be (insert the most recent hobby/sport that they have been into at that moment).” How do you typically respond? Maybe it’s an enthusiastic “wow honey that is great!” or with an encouraging (yet logical) “awesome- that’s why it is important to work really hard”. If you hear this phrase daily it might be met with an eye roll and a quick “uh huh”, knowing that by tomorrow it will be something completely different. According to my six year old she has about eight professions that she wants to do (simultaneously of course) and five houses in different locations around the world. Ambitious I know.
Watching the Olympics this past week and hearing the stories of the amazing athletes that are competing makes me reflect on this simple statement of our children. At one time I am sure that Simone Biles said “when I grow up I am going to be a gymnast”.
As a parent we can either foster that passion, or we can dismiss it with a quick response. But the reality is that our children really CAN be a doctor. A teacher. A delivery person. A scientist. A professional. Or whatever it is that they are passionate about. And we as parents are the ones that can encourage that (even if it does change daily). Because all of those Olympians have families as well, and they have loved ones who supported them, encouraged them, and helped them to achieve their dreams. So watch your kids grow- who knows- they could be one of the next set of Olympians. Medal or not, just getting there is a dream come true.