Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Up for daughter of the year!

These are my parents and right now they are serving a mission for our church in Czech Republic, Prague to be exact. I am a 34 year old woman and I have never been without my mom and dad for more than a few weeks. Even at college, they were still only 40 minutes away. Pathetic , I know, but nonetheless true! I have been doing surprisingly well without them- thanks for asking- but it has only been two weeks. I do miss them a lot, but I know they are where they should be. They have been planning this mission since the beginning of the year and this is the first time I have mentioned it on my blog. My sisters have written about it several times each- so they are probably in better contention for the "Daughter of the Year" award. But I am about to remedy that.

Now my intention here is to write a tribute to my parents, but first I must tell a little story. But stick with me, I will eventually tie it back to the parents. A few nights ago I was with some friends having dinner. The conversation turned to "What is your passion?" I think I may have asked this question because I am always curious to know what other people's passions are because I don't think I could name a specific passion or interest that really drives me. I enjoy many different things, but I can't think of one thing I just couldn't live without. The girl I asked answered that dancing was hers. I have also heard people say music or sports or writing or decorating or you get the idea. I have had this conversation with my mother as well and her feelings are similar to mine in that we can't think of just one thing. I think we both feel like this is some sort of shortcoming. Like we aren't a whole, complete person without a "passion." During this same evening with my girlfriends, the conversation at one point was about "getting over" some of the mistakes our parents made. Everyone expressed love for their parents, but I could tell a few people have had rougher childhoods. It made me think about what I have had to "get over". I mean sure my mother likes a clean house and sometimes I can hear the "a place for everything and everything in its place" echo in my ear. And my dad is a big proponent of saving and I get the image of Dick Van Dyke in Mary Poppins singing "If you invest your tuppence wisely in the bank safe and sound, soon that tuppence safely invested in the bank will compound." (And no, I didn't remember all the words to those lyrics. I LOVE google!) When I was younger, often when I came home from babysitting with cash or got a paycheck from whatever measly job I had, my dad, with a sly grin on his face, would sheepishly ask, "Do you want me to put that in the bank for you?" But really being clean and saving money- are these really vices I need to "get over?!?" I think many people across the nation and world could benefit from such upbringing. In fact, all this government bailout mess has happened while my dad has been gone and I am dying to know his opinion on it.
Now I am not trying to say my parents were perfect, I mean they made mistakes too. Just ask any one of their children- we will be able to recall any number of incidences by reciting famous Robbins' parents' sayings- i.e.- "Where's your brain- in you foot?" or "I'm mad now, you can move." (At this point, my parents are thinking "Hey wait a minute! What kind of tribute is this!") But what I am trying to say is that I think I have discovered my parents' passion... raising stable, healthly, well-adjusted children. I am learning this is no small feat and requires passionate dedication. I'm not saying if a person has another passion, they can't be a good parent, but I am eternally grateful my parents did devote so much of their energy to raising their family. I can't speak for my siblings, but I always felt like we were their #1 priority. One of the miracles of this kind of sacrifice is what is called the "ripple effect." When they put in the time, energy, love and devotion it requires to raise children well, the effects can be far-reaching. You see, because I had a childhood with good memories, a feeling of well-being and an understanding of who I am, I am in a better position to provide this for my children who then can provide this for their children and on and on. The effect can literally last forever. And really what better purpose in life is there than that! This is also why I am amazed at people who may have had a harder childhood, who can overcome it and still be the kind of parents they didn't have.
But for now the lucky people of the Czech Republic can receive some of the love I have so selfishly taken for granted for 34 years. Thank you mom and dad for making me who I am! I love you both and miss you terribly!
(And if that don't raise my standing in the "Daughter of the Year" competition, I don't know what will!)

10 comments:

amberjill said...

For a second there I was wondering who these girlfriends are that you go out with?!? :) JK you can have other friends...but I'm glad you dont! hahaha kidding...again!
Anyway, what I know of your parents, they seem pretty awesome! And, while you are missing your wonderful parents, don't forget your adopted family. We love you too! Just ask, anytime, we'll tell you what to do and where to go! :) sweet post Kari! I'd vote for you!

Wood Family said...

nice try!-- I am still the #1 daughter of the year. case in point- see all my referrals in SEVERAL posts to mom and dad- not just in 1 trying to jockey for the #1 spot. seriously, a real nice post to elder and sister robbins...

Thelissa said...

I don't have a "passion" either. Unless you consider scouring through my pantry in search of something chocolate every 20 minutes. I think I will adopt the idea that my passion is my kids. I suppose it is, but only by default. Who has time for anything else! I do love being with them and doing everything for them, but again, it is a passion by default.

SevenVillageIdiarts said...

Sweet post, you really do have great parents and they turned out a pretty wonderful girl, YOU!!

Natalie said...

I hate to bring this up again, but remember how you almost didn't invite Mom to your birthday party? Umm..yeah. I don't think you are quite up for daughter of the year. :)
(That was sarcasm, for those of you who don't know me, I'm Kari's sister, and I'm not rude)
Cute post. I second all those thoughts. We have been blessed with some awesome parents.

Kamille said...

That is a great post. Funny too I've been thinking about that question since that night too. I think you have a lot of passion too. It is just bridled passion. Something I have some jealousy over. I think you and your parents are amazing.

Tebbs Times said...

Love the sibling rivalry!! CUTE post, cute family!!

mama missy said...

You are absolutely right.... you are my passion and I must say you turned out quite amazing!!!
Love you.

Kerry said...

I'm so proud of your parents! The world severely needs more missionary couples out there! It just makes my day to see that your parents are able and willing to serve the Lord...especially at such a young age. Freaking awesome!!!

Chelsea Pratt said...

What a beautiful post. I have always struggled with that passion for something thing. It will only fill you up if your time is spent in the right place, so there could be no greater passion...thanks for the reminder!