We were very nervous to have a second child. Our first child was sweet, obedient and a girl. Not a bad combination for our first try. We were confident, we were amazing parents, we had it all figured out. The midwife who was delivering our second child must have seen the arrogance on our faces, because she used five words that still ring true: “You get what you need.”
We knew within twenty-four hours of our son’s birth that we had gotten what we needed. He had a temper, he was contrary, he was a boy.
The midwife’s words have been fulfilled many times since they were uttered. As if our son wasn’t enough, two years later, the birth of our third child left us even more bewildered. Our arrogance has turned into a form of mortification. Each child has managed to embarrass us more than the next. They keep us humble, which must have been exactly what we needed.
These words bring me comfort. When I am worried about some future event, I resolve that I’ll get what I need. It may not be what I want, but it will be what I need. I don’t view every bad situation as a disaster. I think: What do I need? What am I supposed to learn from this? When I get frustrated with others who seem to face no consequences for their decisions, I tell myself, they’ll get what they need. Then I sit back and wait. Sure enough, the prophecy is always fulfilled. The user gets used. The smug get humbled. The unreliable are jilted, and the untrustworthy are misled. This principle runs on autopilot. The best thing to do once it’s in motion is enjoy the ride. Just remember, you’re the one who chose the course, so don‘t complain when it get‘s bumpy. Have fun and don’t worry, because you‘ll always get what you need.