While surfing through status updates of people I know on Facebook this morning, a Thanksgiving meme caught my eye. The meme asked: "What are you most thankful for?" and my friend answered: "Parents who sacrificed selflessly for their children."
And I immediately wondered if my children, when they become adults, will say the same for me.
I'm quick to recall the dozens of hours each month that I drive my kids to and from sporting events and school functions. And I'm good at counting the time and money spent on family vacations. I'm a concerned and active parent when my children are ill, and miss work now and again when necessary to care for them during times of sickness. It's true that our family enjoys a lot of time together, and the amount of time can be taxing--for them and for me. But the question remains:
Do I sacrifice selflessly for my children?
I'm notoriously good at finding time to be alone. I squirrel away opportunities for isolation often, enjoying the calm and quiet I need to rejuvenate after the stresses of work and life have overwhelmed me. I'm easily frustrated when that time is shortened, and can become angry when it's impossible to obtain. And to be honest, most times that access to quiet time is blocked is because of something I need to do for my kids.
Sacrifice has to be more than just doing for someone else. To sacrifice selflessly suggests to me a loving desire to do without for someone, simply because my doing without will enhance their quality of life in some manner.
Perhaps I don't act in a manner that is "selfless" toward my children, after all.
That has to change.