I was stunned when each of my children, on separate pediatrician’s visits, ran from the doctor’s office without even glancing at the sticker bucket. On many, many previous visits, choosing the perfect sticker had been a 20 minute ordeal. Suddenly it seemed, the sticker stage was over.
One of my favorite questions to ask groups of parents is to share a recent family milestone. My sticker bucket story is the story I love to tell. While I had anticipated many of our children’s milestones – the first step, the move from crib to the big-boy bed, the first day of kindergarten, the first drop-off playdate…there are even more that I didn’t anticipate. These are milestone moments that surprised me: when my kids gave up on the sticker bucket; when they first rode their bikes to the library without me; when they joyfully jumped off the diving board, without drama, again and again; when our cat no longer fled but let himself be petted by their small hands; when they started to wake for school by the sound of the alarm clock.
In Parenting Through a Jewish Lens, we reflected on the life course we anticipate for each of our children. We also reflected on what a Jewish life course would include.
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