My first business trip - August 2006

There are few things on this Earth I dislike more than staying by myself overnight. It’s probably all those episodes of Law & Order: SVU that I’ve watched. I get myself so worked up, I sleep with my glasses on and the TV turned to ESPN (nothing scary ever comes on except for the latest Vandy football score).

Over the past few months, I’ve been doing more travel for work. It’s hard to be away from the family, but my stress is only multiplied by the thought of staying alone in the hotel room. One trip I had even convinced myself that my missing key was stolen by the cleaning lady who planned on coming back in the night and hurting me.

I do not want Addison to be this way. I want her to be a confident, strong individual. But as a parent, how do you teach your child to do something or be something you are clearly not?

Addison's First Day at Her New School

I’m not always going to be there. She’s going to be scared by a thunderstorm, fall and scrape her knee, and get pushed down by a bully. She’s going to have her heart broken, get a speeding ticket, and go to college.

The truth is, I’m probably not going to be around for many of those things. Hopefully she will come to me afterward for comfort and support, but she must be determined and resilient in these situations on her own. Allen and I will need to teach her that, and maybe I’ll be able to teach myself too.

What trait do you hope your children don’t carry on?