It was that moment in our lives as family to celebrate our first daughter's graduation from college. My wife and her brother had gone out to the mall few kilometers away from the house to see a movie and after which they went to the park. Two days before that day, i had a phone conversation with my family and I assured them of my presence because I was away on a business trip with my employer. The business trip was expected to be just 48hours business meeting coupled with flight time. Unfortunately, the client we were supposed to meet had a board meeting that took some overtime, they paid for our hotel bookings to be extended, and there I was staring at the glass window creating an image of how sad my daughter would be not seeing me at the family timeout.
At that moment, i could also feel the disappointment and the pulse of my family, most especially my daughter. It was indeed a painful experience. I was expected to be with them taking pictures and having a nice and lovely time with my family, but there I was stuck in this business trip. Well I would have loved for it to be shifted, but it was an agreed time by the family, and we already promised nothing was going to come clashing with it.
Now that the deed has been done, and there is no way to turn back the hands of time no matter what. What is the next thing to do? Do you just let it slide, and make your family feel like you are not considerate of their feelings or their love. Definitely, not reckoning with that is some kind of level of nonchalant attitude towards them, or you think there is no way to make the wrongs, right.
Let me take you on a ride on what can be done.
Run through the past
When you fall short at some moment just because of some situations that are out of your control, the first thing to do is run through the level of your dedication from the past. The times you have made yourself available whether planned or unplanned and how much sweet memories of you not being a nonchalant parent. I did that on my dedication to my family and I realized that there are times I have made some sacrifice and made them feel the love of having me around. It is more like the precipitation you have made for your rainy days. This will go a long way in making your family understand that you have them at heart, but there are just unforeseen circumstances that are irreversible, and they will understand better aa the ascend in life.
Even though I could not make it to my daughter's celebration, I still made her realize the times I have made myself available in other celebrated times in her life, and I had it to be present at this celebration, but unfortunately I couldn't.
Feel your child's pulse
For some parents when they miss out on one of the great moments to show how lovely they are and how important their kids is, they become all bossy and carefree. They let kid know "oh! Come on, its a graduation celebration. I will be there other things to come." This is enough to put the child and some of them even forget how much you have been from times past. As a matter of fact, the future is not promised to nobody. So when you miss out on these kind of moments, the best you can do is to tuck the child, give him/her a warm hug and a kiss on the forehead. Make him/her realize you feel how painful and disappointing it is not to be present at such moment. Possibly you could find a way to make it up, just to erase any form of impression at all it might have left in the child's mind, but let it some experience bigger and better from the one he/she had. That is another way to see you actually feel the child's pulse, and made an atonement to erase that negative.
You are expected to have a shift in mind
I know you must have been thinking how can this influence your own life and decision. When I missed Nina's graduation celebration, I realized that there is always a reason to have a contingency plan for anything at all. It added to my planning strategies and always making for unforeseen circumstances.
Yes, I missed the celebration, and as I was in the flight back home, I was already looking at places we can have a well palatable and memorable vacation during summer.