Monday, August 18, 2014

The Pursuit of Excellence

I grew up in a household that instilled excellence in everything. As a side effect, you were never quite good enough. However, all of my siblings and I are successful in our own way. We are all very driven, and I'm extremely grateful for my parents expecting excellence. It was funny growing up being the family people wanted to emulate. I would have teachers and church members say constantly, “I wish I had a kid like you” or “I wish our family was like yours.” For many reasons, my childhood was not something I look back upon with fondness. It’s ironic to be well thought of and be miserable.

Flash forward to adulthood. Give me any crappy day of adulthood, and it’s a better day than being a kid. I don’t want to paint everything in a bad light. My parents were truly invested in our upbringing, and I know they loved me and I felt loved by them. We have a great relationship to this day, and I speak to them often. There are just some sorrows that must be kept very secret.

Nonetheless, I find myself fighting the issue of excellence as a parental figure. One thing I promised myself is that I would accept best effort over pressuring my stepchild for perfection. Let’s be honest, it’s extremely stressful to strive for perfection. I want what’s best for my stepchild. Luckily, my stepchild didn’t grow up with the same stress I experienced as a youth. However, I know they have their own stress with the divorce.

I’ve found the best thing is to focus on doing your best rather than having the most optimal outcomes. Good grades were of huge importance growing up. As were expected, and, for the most part, achievable. Because of differing education values in my stepchild’s households, I find myself in a losing battle at times. There are times when we’ve feared they would have to go to summer school due to poor grades.

I received a letter from the district because a packet that should have been completed by my stepchild was not submitted. This packet was from their history class from the last school year. School starts in another week, and things are looking so great. Here’s to hoping that we can get this class credit fixed and that we’ll avoid failing any courses for 2014-2015.


Heather said...

Hi there! I'm Heather and I have a question about your blog that I was hoping you could answer! Please email me at Lifesabanquet1(at)gmail(dot)com :-)

Charity Tipton said...

Hi there. I am a Charity and I am also a blogger, mother, stepmother and wife. Please feel free to email me at lbequeen317 at I would love to talk.

Rosalinda said...

Hi, about a month ago I came across your blog and stayed up all night reading it from start to finish. I am in a similar situation but instead of 1 kid I have 3 step kids. It was nice to be able to read your blogs and know that what I was feeling and going through was somewhat normal or at least that I wasn't the crazy one. Your blog as actually inspired me to write my own blog. So thanks for sharing your experiences and for inspiring me as well. :)