My father is an architect.
I spent my childhood watching him work. I saw how each house starts as a plan on paper (back then it was still paper), grows walls and windows, being painted and sealed with a roof. Then it is being colored with the character of the family living there.
Building a house is a process. It takes time and requires patience. A lot of patience.
30 years later my own house is being renovated. I’m standing in the middle of my living room, surrounded by dust, buckets of paint, tools, and...what can I say… I’m surrounded by mess...plenty of it.
I’m looking at the house, wishing this whole process will end. I wish I could skip everything and that someone will simply hand me back my house when it’s done. Clean and renewed.
“But you are an architect’s daughter!” they say, “you know it takes time!”
That’s true. I know. But it doesn’t mean I like it.
I thought about it while working with 2 wonderful parents.
They are in the middle of a process as well.
Like every parent I know, they started with a plan. It was drafted in their heads even before the kids were born.
Each of them had an idea of what kind of parent he or she will be, what kind of kids they’ll have and how will their family be.
As the years went by, the plan was shaped differently than they expected. Something isn’t working. A change is needed.
Now they are here. They came to make a change. To renovate the relationship.
They wish they could skip the process: the difficulties, the mess, the changes. They wish someone could hand them the kids (or themselves) reshaped, renewed.
I understand them. It’s so hard.
In order to build something new, we have to change some of the old. To draft a new plan, go back to the foundations and grow slowly.
There are surprises along the way and uncertainty. It’s scary.
I understand them. And we are in it together.
We are working together according to the new plan, building, and coping with whatever comes our way.
You see, I’m not just a parent coach, I’m also an architect’s daughter. And I know that no matter how long it takes to build a house, how much energy it takes, eventually, it will be home. Strong, stable, and loving. Like the family in it.