Archive for March, 2009

puzzle1It’s been a while since I’ve posted here, and I’ve had this on my mind for a while, so …

I was walking to work from one of our “satellite” parking lots recently, and started gazing around downtown Cedar Rapids. In my three-block walk alone, I passed a bar, a refrigeration equipment company, a credit union, a social services agency for women, a city park and a church. Had I taken a slightly different route to the office, I’d have passed some homes and a restaurant as well.

Here’s what struck me: All of these institutions came to be at different times in the history of the city. There was no “master plan” that resulted in the downtown we see today. (And of course, had there been a master plan, our catastrophic flooding last year has swept a great deal of that plan away.)

My point? Plans for our kids can’t be any more structured, or organized, than the plans for a city’s downtown. We have one kid who’s very cautious, another who’s unnervingly reckless. One will try almost any food, another is exremely picky. One loves math, the other is more of an artist.

And yet they both love to wrestle with their dad (when there’s time), watch SpongeBob and draw grand chalk designs on the sidewalk.

What pieces help assemble the puzzle that is our kids? I probably have a better idea now than I will in a few years. And while I’d like to think I can control it, deep inside — I know better.

And hey, that’s part of the fun, right? Seeing how the puzzle comes together?

I can only hope they don’t end up with missing pieces.

Here’s to the joy of 5,000.

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