Support your children's pursuits at a young age. Learn how this father started helping make his daughter's dreams a reality--and formed the fondest memories and a lasting bond along the way.
Self-discovery is a process that can take a lifetime, but when your child knows what he or she wants at a young age, you have to give your all-out support. For Scott, co-author and co-illustrator behind the Life-Saving Books, he knew that he had to support his young daughter's dream of becoming a purposeful young author--even though he, himself, had no idea how to publish a book!
"I loved that she wanted to do something special, and I was thrilled. On the other hand, I realized that to make something she could really be proud of would take a lot of work, and I was worried she would run out of steam before it was completed. I also realized that it would be a lot of work for me to help her make this dream of hers a reality," he said. "If it wasn’t for the respect she had for me as her Dad, and the special bond we had together, even at that young age, I am not sure I would have made the commitment to her to help her with this huge task," Scott said.
He shared that when he and his daughter Tia started writing their first book, What If, Tia was very hands-on with the process. "We worked together as a team, and nothing that was put into the book wasn’t approved by her personally. This was her vision, and I was there to help her any way I could. I was very surprised that even at 6 years old she was correcting the grammar in the book, by adding commas, and capitalizing specific words, even though I am a college graduate."
He continued: "It was really a mutual effort between the two of us. Without the combined effort of each of us, and the respect we had for each other, these books would not have become a reality. We brainstormed ideas for the 'What ifs', and we used some of what I thought of and some she thought of, but she always had the final vote."
Being a young author, Tia is certainly an exceptional child. But more than her talents and skills, Scott is most proud of his daughter's big heart for reaching out to people. He shared an instance when Tia was just five years old. "She was waiting in line for her first day of kindergarten. Even though she may have been a little nervous herself, she noticed a young girl crying and clinging to her mother, because she did not want to go to school. Tia walked over to that other girl and said, 'Hi, my name is Tia what is your name?' After the girl answered, Tia said, 'It looks like we are going to be in the same class, let’s do this together'."
"That was one of my most proud moments as a Father. She was more worried about the other girl than herself at that moment. It brought tears to my eyes," Scott said.
For parents who also aspire to support their children's pursuits, Scott has this advice: "There are a lot of tools out there to help make this process easier. But make sure you are doing it for the right reasons. Make sure they really want to do this. And have fun brainstorming together. If you do this, I truly hope they can have the special bonding moments that Tia and I share."
Scott said that because of working together, his bond with his daughter has become stronger than ever. He said that helping her write that book is one of his fondest memories of her growing up. And Scott knows more memories are yet to be made. For him, Tia is destined to do even greater things--and this is only the beginning.