Raise them brave

In a park near our house is a big tree with dense, low-hanging branches. A climbing tree.

Ever since my kids were little I've encouraged them to go high, to balance on things, to try to get places. When they were young I would hold their hands. Now they leave me far behind.

In the park, my eldest climbed right up until the branches started to get thin, as high as he judged safe. He has fantastic upper body strength, partly because he climbs so many trees.

My middle son climbed a little way up. Not as high as the eldest, but still a good way, enough to break a leg if he fell. Enough to get a good view over the fields.

At the bottom most branch of the tree there was another child, and a mother. He was a little older than my youngest, maybe 7 or 8. The mother stood at the bottom of the tree and instructed him, with a worried look on her face not to climb any higher than the first branch.

The boy looked up at my kids, up in the sky amongst the buds with the view out over the field. Then he looked sad and scared and climbed down to his mother.

In the short term, she was being sensible, she was keeping her child safe. But in the long term?

Are you molding leaders? Brave and fearless men and women with the courage to challenge and try?

Who are you raising your kids to be?