Running with Kaylee

Patrick and Kaylee

This has been a monumental month for me to say the least! My oldest daughter (Kaylee) graduated from high school.  My youngest daughter completed Kindergarten.  I finished my Doctorate of Ministry from Drew University and my first book is published by David C Cook.  As June 1 has arrived, indeed May 2015 will always be a month to remember in the Quinn family.


Upon reflecting on Kaylee’s high school graduation and in preparation for her departure to college, my emotions fluctuate day to day.  I know it is time to let her run the race God has laid before her, but I desperately want to run it with her.  The reality is this has always been her race to run.  I have been privileged to run alongside her for a short period of time while God entrusted me with her childhood years.  As a college Freshman she will quite literally run on the University of North Alabama’s Cross Country Team.  Little did I know when we began running all those years ago she would run right into a college scholarship!  I will always treasure the times we ran together.  As she leaves me in the dust, I know she will always carry my dust with her.  Yes, May 2015 has been a great month.  Run Kaylee run!  To God be the Glory for the great things He has done!


Below is an excerpt from the book I thought I would share in honor of its release.


Let’s Go for a Run

I’ll never forget the day Kaylee and I went running in our Gulf Shores, Alabama, neighborhood when she was twelve. In many ways, it was a day like many others. We had been enjoying sports together since she was seven years old and running together for much of that time. It was a great opportunity to spend time together, build our relationship, and get in a little exercise to boot. What was different that day was that I could tell she was ready to leave me behind.

In my mind’s eye, I can still see the spot where we were running about two miles from home. In the past I had always set the pace, but this time I was starting to get winded, while Kaylee showed no signs of slowing down. Before I really even knew what I was doing, I said to her, “Do you want to run on ahead?” She looked at me with a question in her eyes for half a second, then smiled. “Sure, Dad!” And she was off, heading back to the house, leaving me behind. Panic gripped me briefly. What have I done, I wondered.

Yet at the same time I realized, this was always where we had been heading. In the words John the Baptist to Jesus, “He must increase, I must decrease.” That’s true for us as parents too. The day comes when our children become adults and leave us behind. We may dread it and even feel sad when that day comes, but in our hearts that’s what we truly want for them. They must increase, we must decrease. But when they leave us behind, what will they take with them? An old Jewish blessing says, “May the dust of your rabbi be upon you.” It means may you be following so closely in your teacher’s footsteps that who he or she is rubs off on you, and you become like that person.

Kaylee was leaving me in the dust, but in other ways she was carrying my dust with her. After all the miles she had run behind me, in my footsteps, my influence had rubbed off on her, and she will always carry that with her, no matter how far ahead of me she eventually goes. And my prayer is that she will go far indeed. (excerpt from p.35, How To Ruin Your Child In 7 Easy Steps)

One thought on “Running with Kaylee

  1. What a great description of our emotions as parents. I used to have a sign when my kids were little “Two things we are to give our children – roots and wings” Wings are much harder. Parenting is intentional – doing what comes natural makes a mess with kids who turn into “natural” adults. Thanks for being in intentional parent. She’ll do great!

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