Mar 8, 2012

Parenting Perspective

by Kari Diane Pike

I heard the stair stomping first. The bathroom door banged shut about the same time the emotional shock waves slammed into my brain. The sobbing, muffled as it was by the sound of the running faucet and the gale-force winds outside, grabbed my heart and squeezed. When I heard the words,

"I can't do it. It's too much,"

I hit the floor with my knees and did the only thing I could do at the moment. I prayed. I prayed hard. I prayed the way only a mother can pray when she knows her child is suffering.

A brilliant sun appeared this morning, literally and metaphorically. The winds calmed during the night, and so did  my fourteen-year-old. As I stared out the window at the giant, uprooted cottonwood tree left behind by the storm, I couldn't help but wonder what changes have taken place within our man-child. The roots of the tree are blackened and withered. My hope is that we have provided an environment for our son that has helped him develop roots that are strong and deep.

I made my way down the stairs and began the morning routines and rituals. I served breakfast and my husband started family scripture study. We had finished reading the New Testament a couple days before and were back to the Book of Mormon.

Have you ever been away for a long time from someone you really care about? Do you remember how you felt when you were reunited? I felt like that as Doug began reading, "I, Nephi, having been born of goodly parents..." (1 Nephi 1:1). My entire body filled with peace and joy -- the kind of joy you feel when you meet up with someone you really love and know they love you in just the same way. As the Spirit testified to me of the truthfulness of the words with which I am so familiar, I was also comforted with the knowledge that Heavenly Father watches over all of His children. He will help us continue to teach and guide our son.

As for what this has to do with writing -- perhaps, I just needed to record this event. I have been delving into the world of family history more and more as I have struggled to find a missing link between several generations. Tonight, Liz Adair is visiting the Salt Lake and Wasatch Writers and sharing with us how she uses family history to create characters and stories. I, for one, am looking forward to what she has to teach us. Hopefully, my children will forgive me as I use them in the process!


  1. When my sons were fourteen, I couldn't even imagine what they were thinking, let alone what they were feeling most of the time. The storm happening around you pretty much identified your son's mood. I'm sure, years from now, your family will look back and smile at how their lives are reflected in your writing. It's better than their journal entries!

  2. I would NEVER be a teenager again. And I was one of the better ones giggle. I did my crying at night in my pillow so I didn't bother anyone. Thank goodness we grow up and out of that stage of our lives. One day you two will laugh over it. And that makes it all better.

  3. Stair stomping and door slamming. Ah, yes. I remember it well. Not so much from my children, but from my two youngest siblings. The youngest seem to have a special angst the others cannot fathom. Being the oldest, I always wished I was the youngest; just once. *sigh*

  4. my heart is with you. I love to hear Liz speak


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