Giftings Untapped


Turning 50 is blowing my mind a little bit, but not in the “OH MY LIFE IS ALMOST OVER” way. More of a “what is still left inside of me?” way.

Do you ever wonder about that?

What you may have written off as, “I don’t know how to” just because you never tried?

I always admire people who can paint. I think… gosh, I wish I could paint.

I look at my son Nick and remember his gift for languages. How many could he have learned?

Inside of Kai is an incredible dancer. You oughta see him move. It’s beautiful. Effortless. Where would an unselfconscious Kai have gone? Where would he have danced?

Bella wrote a book in her brain at age 13. A story of conquering her insecurities. It got her through junior high, and it’s incredible. Stunningly original. What if she had put it on paper?

It hit me today that I’ve never tried painting on canvas. Not once. Never took a class, never looked up “beginning painting” on YouTube, just chalked up that one creative outlet as “not my talent.”

But what if I am a painter? Seriously. What if I am like… this massively gifted painter?

What gifts are dying to come out?

Literally dying.

Inside of me.

Inside of you.

In the 90’s as a young single parent I didn’t have the money for private school for Nick, or any of the privileged opportunities for him. His grandma paid for martial arts though from the time he was 5, and he’s living and breathing martial arts today. That was just one opportunity, and he excelled and brought it with him into adulthood. He is a martial artist through and through.

How many more talents are in there?

Life was different in the 2000’s when my twins were small, and I, like a lot of hopeful parents, wanted to expose them to everything. See what they liked and wanted to pursue.

Bella was pretty much forced to play violin from age 5. She wasn’t great, but good enough to play well into high school orchestra. She always sounds best if she plays with others who are great violinists. What would she have been great at if we’d let go of the “good enough”? If you’re a violin mom, you know there’s not a lot of room for anything else. Her first violin teacher strongly urged us (unsuccessfully) not to let her play tennis. It would interfere with the stroke of her violin.

From the time she was 4 her tennis coach pointed at her tiny little self and said, “that one, that’s the one to watch. She is headed for first singles at the college level.” She was four. He saw it. We wanted it. She pursued it casually on weekends, and begrudgingly played violin every day.

As a high school senior we’ve discovered casual doesn’t get you to first singles, but it gets you to second. To good enough even if your potential was for greatness.

On the flip, solid dedication doesn’t necessarily get you to great when it’s not your gift.

Her violin teacher never once said she had a gift. She didn’t. I knew she didn’t but we were so deep into it by that point. So much money and time invested. What a waste to let it go…

Oh but hindsight is 20/20 isn’t it?

I’m so tired of hearing about and living in unreached potential, aren’t you?

Aren’t you ready to tap it? Surpass it?

Gosh, I am. I really am. Not in the striving for success way, but in the draw out the gift way. I want to see what greatness is still inside. I want to know a gifting that with some effort, some dedication, some discipline, just might blow me away. Something worthy of 10,000 hours of practice to master.

I just don’t know what it is yet.

Is there more than one? I’ll bet.

Do you want to search yours out with me?

No, I’m not trying to coach you, and I don’t want your money.

I just wonder. Is there a blank canvas with your name on it?

Could be fun to find out together.

Love, Val

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