Monday, November 19, 2012

Making the grade.

Man alive, can you feel the struggle?  

Where there's determination there's success.  In one way or another.  It's all in how we look at it.  BUT, "It isn't on the pinnacle of success and ease where men and women (and babies named Sam) grow into strong characters."  I wouldn't argue with President Benson.

It seems like character-building is a theme I always come back to in my life.  Something I'm always thinking about.  Outward appearances will only take you so far.  If there's nothing deep about your soul, well, life is dull, shallow, insipid.  And, it makes for a pretty boring person, no matter how nice they are to look at.

I'm in the thick of trying to teach my kids the value of effort, that the journey means more than the destination.  No question about it, they'll arrive at a destination, but it's what they DO along the way that determines WHERE they'll end up.

My favorite high school English teacher, Mr. Prieskorn, always used to say that grades didn't matter.  I can't count how many times we argued with him that he was wrong...and CRAZY for even saying that.  Hello, college applications, scholarships, etc.  But I figured out what he meant.  If you worked hard, made the effort, you'd get the A.  It's all in the effort, what you're willing to give.  Not the grade.  Effort builds character, gives you substance, and makes you interesting, articulate, and unique.  

That's the person I want to be.  That's the person I want my kids to be.  Hands down, it's way cooler than just a pretty face.

I didn't have that vision when I was a teenager.  I wanted fast, quick, easy results.  I wanted to do the least amount of work to get the grade so I could spend more time with friends, which is probably pretty normal, but I'm hoping my kids will catch on a little sooner that I did.  I guess you'd call me a late-bloomer.

In the words of the All-Wise Miley Cyrus, "It's the climb."

Folks, she's right.

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