March 31, 2016 6:50 AM EDT

Donna Gorman, a mom and the author of Am I Going to Starve to Death?: A Survival Guide for the Foreign Service Spouse, moves to a new country every few years for her husband’s job with the Department of State. Here’s what she has learned about parenting.

1 GET OFF YOUR PEDESTAL

“As a diplomat, learning the ways of a new place, you’ll look like a fool on a regular basis. Your children will know you seldom have the right answers. I’m hoping that watching me struggle will teach them that it’s O.K. not to have all the answers in life–it’s the willingness to search for answers that counts.”

2 LEARN TO FLY SOLO

“When my husband was given a yearlong assignment in Iraq, I stayed in Jordan with four kids and tried to work full time, cook dinner and help the kids with their homework. Now a weeklong business trip means nothing more than a few cheat meals and less laundry.”

3 RECALIBRATE RISK

“The more risks we take as a family, the bigger the adventures we’re going to have.”

–Belinda Luscombe

This appears in the April 11, 2016 issue of TIME.

Contact us at letters@time.com.

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