photos of Penny traveling to Atlanta and posing with friends from Hope Heals Camp who are in Atlanta

Prioritize Relationships

I gave our daughter Penny two choices for her senior year spring break—the Bahamas (where she has always wanted to go) or Atlanta. She chose Atlanta because going to Atlanta meant hanging out with—and interning with and enjoying—friends from Hope Heals Camp.

The past few days in Atlanta have reminded me that the most important gift we can give ourselves and our children is relationships. Relationships matter. (You can read more about our trip AND Penny’s prom dress shopping here!)

I don’t have lots of regrets as a parent, but when I look back on these past 18 years of parenting Penny, I do wish we had done more on a regular basis to connect our family to other people. That could have been inviting kids over to our house when Penny was younger, volunteering to host class gatherings, or making time just to walk around in our community and engage with people.

I’m so grateful for the relationships we do have, and I see now that those relationships matter even more than the skills Penny was developing by going to therapist appointments or doing her homework or practicing piano. All of those things are great, but with limited time, I’ve learned to choose relationships first.

We’re going to talk about this and all sorts of other things in my upcoming (live, virtual) workshop, Reimagining Family Life with Disability. I’d love to see you there.



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