by Clinton Harris – Guest Contributor
I was able to witness pure, unadulterated beauty today. It was not in the form of a flower…but almost. It was not the view of a gorgeous woman…but something like that. It was not in the form of a work of art…but in a way it was. It was not even in the form of something abstract…although it kind of is that way.
To start, I am not a parent. Parenthood is a role I would like to be in at some point in life. However, I have been able to be a part of the growing process of many children. I have seen children that have been intelligent and full of zest. I have seen some children that were insecure and awkward to their peers. I have observed the rite of passage when students graduate high school and/or college and attain a goal that their parents might not have reached. However, to me that is not wholesome, unmodified magnificence.
Adults that have been situated into the role of mentor as well as those parents that have an active role in the life of their child view the flourishing. It is a wish for most of us that hopefully we can see come true that if you “train a child in the way that they should go…” and want others to partake since it “takes a village to…” and the validation that the words we speak truly do not “go in one ear…”.
I was able to examine it today from afar and yet so close. A mother that prayed and struggled was able to reap the rewards of a gorgeous being that she brought into the world. One must realize that the “struggle” parents speak of is not always in the sense of money. The “struggle” is not always in the realm of material items to provide her child. The “struggle” is with the unknown.
Questions substantiate the unknown. Is the person that I brought into the world as my child going to become a unique yet abstract being that happens to lighten the world and change it in their own way? Will the tireless hours of changing diapers and trying to cure the ills that come and go from baby to adolescence leave a permanent and detrimental impact? Did I do the right thing and make the right decision regarding my child?
Deep Zen Meditation
Can anyone imagine how many times has the parent had to dust off the knees and look for a full box of tissues weeping over what may or may not happen to assure that their child is alright…needs met…bills paid…place to live…food to buy…medical appointments secured…? If you can’t feel the issues that parents/mentors go through then it is truly a missed opportunity to empathize. Even with the questions that are answered and still in the queue, the splendor that is underlying is simply remarkable.
Yet I witnessed it. As said before it was from afar and yet I felt like I was a part of it. The flower blossomed. The picture that was painted…the molded sculpture…the manicured garden…became a gorgeous work of art. Abstract turned in to originality, complexity, intelligence, and the affirmation of answered prayers and hope. I witnessed the moment when a child understood what the parent did during the “struggle”. I was an onlooker that saw a young adult comprehend the sacrifices that their parent made. I was a spectator in the front row when a young lady on the rise to change the world thanked a parent for just being what they were supposed to be…a parent.
If you have not seen this for yourself or if you want to be a part of this incredible moment, there is always time. There is always room in the village to make an impact. The brilliance and exquisiteness is there and can come to fruition with love, patience, time, prayers, and God. The “struggle” can be difficult when dealing with the unknown.
Who knows what can happen if you sow good seeds into the life of a child and take the time to _____________. You fill in the rest. It is your turn to add to the realization and confirmation.
Clinton Harris is an educator, a mentor, a studied chemist, an active member of the Washington, D.C. area community, and has most recently completed his dissertation to obtain his PHd.
In spite of all of Clint’s many accomplishments, I am most proud to call Clint my mentor, my encourager, my reason to laugh when I want to cry, my voice of reason when needed, and, most importantly, my friend.