I used to play marbles on the playground in 5th grade. I wasn’t very good at the game. I showed up at school with a pocketful marbles, and by the end of the day my pockets would be almost empty. In a basic game of marbles when you lose you actually lose the marbles you played. I did get better the more that I played.
The point of a basic game of marbles is to shoot your marble at another players’ marble with the intent to hit his marble. If you hit your opponent’s marble, then you get to keep the opponent’s marble.
I believe that parenting is the same way. The marble player is the parent, and the parent has to aim the marble (the child) at a target. We have to intentionally point our children towards a target. We have to aim our children towards a target. The difference is that children have their own free will and ultimately can choose to go their own way, but the point is to intentionally aim your children at your target.
Lady Bird Johnson, former First Lady of the United State was quoted as saying, “Children are apt to live up to what you believe of them.” You may parent the same way I played marbles; I missed the mark a whole lot. As long as you are raising your children with purpose, you are winning.