“Mom, what’s your victory dance?” That stumped me. I can honestly say that I didn’t know the answer. My seven-year-old daughter was doing a killer dance in the middle of the living room. End zone of the Super Bowl worthy dance. The arms, the knees, the fists… it was going down for real. And I didn’t know what to say. Every fiber of my being wanted to get up and get down and put a big smile on that cute face. But I sat there. We all have moments like this as parents. Moments where the words won’t come, and we just plain get stage fright. Moments where we can’t find our victory dance. Moments where we need to remember a few things.
Parents aren’t perfect. And your kids don’t expect you to be. You won’t always have all the answers. It’s ok to say you don’t know. It will teach them they don’t have to have all the answers. It will teach them that it’s ok to be human. To make mistakes. Because they will. And when they do, you want them to still love themselves. Don’t try to be perfect. Be messy. Be real.
Parents deserve grace. There are so many pressures and expectations. There are too many Facebook posts and Pinterest parties to live up to. Resist the push to compare what you do to what others do. Sometimes, we are just too tired to dance. Kids understand. Give yourself the grace they give you.
Even parents can get a second chance. Don’t let one stumbling block (or two, or ten) stop you. Keep trying. Keep going. Dance the next time she asks. Maybe even before she asks. Make your mistakes and try again. Parenting is a marathon, not a sprint. Bounce back. You’re a rock star.
Everyone needs a victory dance. We all need to celebrate our success. To enjoy this wonderful, messy life we live. We need to dance and skip and run in the sprinkler. To raise a kid well, you have to be a kid well. Take advantage of those moments in your kids’ lives and connect with them. These moments that seem so small will have infinite ripples in your relationship.
I’m working on my victory dance. And it will be epic. I’m going to get my arms, my knees, my fists… it’s going down for real. And the next time I do something awesome, I’m doing it. Right in the middle of the living room. Or maybe even my office. Everyone needs a victory dance. What’s yours?