About a week ago, the night before our two girls started the new school year, I posted a blog titled AVision for Your Daughter(s). The post addressed a recent back-to-school TV commercial that showcased the various personalities that young girls might aspire to this school year.
That commercial got me thinking about my aspirations for my own daughters, and prompted me to post the following question for readers of this blog:
"If you could encourage only one overriding trait for your daughter, which would it be?"
While the sample size was small (n<30), the un-scientific results to that question were revealing given the current priorities of our culture and are as follows:
Athletic - 0%
Kind - 26%
Spiritual - 61%
Ambitious - 11%
Clearly the respondents favored one type of quality above the others for their girls. Here are excerpts from a few of the comments that offer insight into this particular choice.
"... for me the choice would be spiritual because I think when you walk that path, the other traits will follow naturally - well, not all of them, but you get the idea." - Laura
"I would pick spiritual hands down, every time. I think it gives perspective (and is the source) to the other gifts, and it is the only one that extends beyond this life." - Beeg
I think these are telling observations and reflect the unspoken aspirations of many of us for our children. The title of this post is "Inspiring" Our Daughters but it applies to any child. The word "inspire" comes from a Latin word that means "in spirit" and is appropriate for this post.
While our kids are their own individuals with unique preferences and tastes, it's our job as parents to "in spirit" them toward a purpose and meaning beyond themselves. At the time I wrote the aforementioned question, I wasn't sure which trait was paramount - but upon reflection, the obvious choice points inward and upward.