I have always been amazed at the impact that parents have on their children's lives. That responsibility weighed heavy on me as a new mom. I wanted my children to have certain things I didn't have ( not material things ), I wanted them to have things like self -esteem, self- worth and confidence. I wanted them to be better and stronger in life's decisions than I was. I wanted them to be safe and have a wonderful childhood. There were days that I felt like I failed miserably at it and other days that I felt maybe I had made a positive difference in their lives. It was a lot of trial and error, since none of them come with instructions. I look at them now all together and mostly grown up and I am very proud of who they are and the positive impact they are making in the world. Then last night around dinner I heard them talking to each other and they were saying things like...."remember the time when mom came in and spanked me for no reason" or "remember the time she made us apologize to our neighbors for something we didn't even do", I guess maybe I remembered only the good things but I had to smile as I watched these neat young adults who I love dearly, tell one horror story after another about me! Oh well, and I thought I didn't do that bad of a job! :)
I wish I could personally tell each new parent how vital their example is to their children. They need to realize that every decision that they make or don't make will heavily effect their kids for good or bad. I worry about parents who are stuck with the issues of their own and are blinded to the fact of how it is effecting their kids, no matter how old or young their are. These little ones are smarter than we might think and they can feel the love or contention in our home and in our relationships.
Maybe because of my abuse, I have this never ending desire to help young parents to get their wake up call...sooner than later, when it comes to addressing the issues that they struggle with in their lives. We have always told our kids that it is ok to get stuck in life, every one does. But it is NOT ok to stay there, that is why it is vital to get help, counseling or something that teaches you the skills on how to get UNSTUCK! Life is hard but those tough lessons (if learned) are what make us stronger and better.
I found this poem about leading and following, maybe it is something we all can read and see which comments we usually say more often. Look at your little ones, if you think you can't change your life because it is just too hard. Please remember them and be determined to be better and stronger and more confident in healthy choices because they are our kids and they are depending on us to show them the way. The right way, a better way!
Leaders vs. Followers
When leaders make a mistake, they say, "I was wrong."
When followers make mistakes, they say, "It wasn't my fault."
A leader works harder than a follower and has more time;
a follower is always "too busy" to do what is necessary.
A leader goes through a problem;
a follower goes around it and never gets past it.
A leader makes and keeps commitments;
a follower makes and forgets promises.
A leader says, "I'm good, but not as good as I ought to be;"
a follower says, "I'm not as bad as a lot of other people."
followers just wait until it's their turn to talk.
Leaders respect those who are superior to them and tries to learn something from them;
followers resent those who are superior to them and try to find chinks in their armor.
Leaders feel responsible for more than their job;
followers say, "I only work here."
A leader says, "There ought to be a better way to do this;"
followers say, "That's the way it's always been done here."
"Your children need your presence more than your presents." ~Jesse Jackson
"It's not only children who grow. Parents do too. As much as we watch to see what our children do with their lives, they are watching us to see what we do with ours. I can't tell my children to reach for the sun. All I can do is reach for it, myself." ~Joyce Maynard
"Don't worry that children never listen to you; worry that they are always watching you." ~Robert Fulghum