Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Second Chances

Second Chances

I am really hard on myself in my desire to be a perfect parent. But I am grateful that after every incident of yelling, or of a “no” that was said too quickly, that I give myself a second chance. I tell myself that in the next 30 seconds, or after naptime, or tomorrow morning I have another chance to be a great parent.

In those hard moments, I try to remember the times I've given other people second chances and how one of them made the most out of it. In my previous job at a University, I once had two students I had hired for some fairly high-profile positions. A couple months later they broke some rules that put their eligibility for those positions in jeopardy. After long conversations with each of them, I decided to give them a second chance. One of them wound up making more bad decisions and ultimately did not work for me and then continued making more bad decisions and left the University. The other one? Well, she’ll be a part of my heart forever. She went to graduate school in the same field as I did and is now a peer, a colleague in my field. Now SHE is working in student affairs at a big state school, and SHE is advising students. It's so totally circle of life! While I know that I wasn’t the only influence on her decision to enter our field, she still remains one of my greatest achievements. She is one of but a handful of former students who know about this anonymous blog - I trust her that much. The reason I gave her a second chance is because I was the beneficiary of a second chance at one point, too.

When I was a student working as an RA, I once also made a bad choice. And after a lengthy discussion, my supervisor gave me a second chance. I’ve thought at times what a different direction my life would have taken had she not done that. It is because of this second chance that I ultimately decided some years later to go to graduate school.

If these are the things that can happen when we give other people second chances, imagine what can happen when we cut ourselves a break and give ourselves a second chance.

2 comments:

The Lowe said...

Remember that saying 'no' is an important part of being a great parent.

Marya said...

I think life if full of second chances every minute of every day. Thanks for reminding me of this.

 
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