Welcome to The Daily Kind, where we help you stay inspired to raise humans ready for anything. I'm Kirk Wheeler. It's February 4th, 2021. I'm so glad you're here.
There are many firsts in our lives. Our first taste of ice cream, our first love, our first heartbreak. The first time we leave home, the birth of a first child. I don't remember my first taste of ice cream, but I do remember the birth of our first child like it was yesterday, but we don't have any pictures of the event. That's my fault. And that failure became a seed.
"If at first you don't succeed, destroy all evidence that you tried." –Steven Wright
The sound you hear when you take a picture on a smartphone, it's what a camera used to sound like. You would take a picture by pressing an actual button and mechanical magic happened, much like the pixel magic that happens today when my daughter fills the camera app on my phone with selfies.
When our son Wyatt was born in 2002, it was the early days of digital photography, but I was not ready to give up on film. So when we packed our bags for the hospital in the days leading up to his birth, I made sure that the 35mm camera was ready to go with extra film, just in case.
A few days later, we returned from the hospital. I took in the roll of film that had recorded this monumental event in the life of our family and weighted with great enthusiasm for the pictures to be developed. I can still picture standing at the counter of the camera shop in Encino when they told me the camera roll was blank.
There must be some mistake. I assured them. Could they please check again? I had just taken pictures of our dogs, and a trip to the mountains and those pictures were fine. So it couldn't be my fault, but it was, I did not load the film correctly and there are no pictures from this first in our lives.
So I did what any rational father would do after experiencing such failure. I bought a new digital camera right then and there no film required. But this is one of those things that you can't really destroy all evidence of because there's no evidence to be destroyed.
These are the kinds of moments we wished never happened to us, but we all have many of these moments in our lives. And instead of feeling the shame of failure, we can turn them into lessons of humility. I'd like to believe I'm a more empathetic parent and human being in large part to failures like these. And I've told this story to our children. Not because it's funny or endearing, but because it's important to share our scars and imperfections in both big and small ways.
And this is one small step that is easy to take, to show that I too, make mistakes, lots of them, but some of the evidence may be missing.
I hope you find this helpful. And remember, there is no perpetual parenting playbook. We're all learning as we go. And with curiosity is our map and our willingness to share some of our failures, we can be ready for anything. So good luck today. You've got this. See you tomorrow.