Hey Dads and Moms. On the quest to becoming a better parent we really have to look at some of the lessons our own parents tried to teach us.
My Dad had me when he was 52. So my sister,brother and I were raised old school, with an Iron Fist. As much as I wanted to relate to all my friends, my sister would say that we were cut from a different cloth and that their story was not my story. My Dad was an older single Dad trying his best to raise 3 kids. I'll talk more about him personally in another blog, but my Dad was a Mechanic / Body-Man. When I was young I always helped him in the shop, at the time I didn't really appreciate everything he was teaching me. I just wanted to go play with my friends, so I thought that having to help him was quite annoying but I still helped. As I'm passing my Dad tools and holding the drop light, he would tell me that being a mechanic was a great trade, but he never wanted me to be a mechanic. At the time I didn't think much of it, I always agreed with him but I always asked myself why would he say that? If being a mechanic was a good trade why tell me not to be one.
The answer came years later when I finally had a my first son. I work for a local transit agency that's a great place to work. So much so that many of my co-workers have many family members working there, including their kids. Something I tell myself is that I don't want my son working here. Now I feel I've learned that lesson, it's not that my Dad didn't want me to have a good job or that what he did wasn't good enough. It's the fact that he wanted me to be better than him. As now I want my son to be better than me. My job wasn't my first career choice, it spurred from a series of unfortunate events. It provided a higher paying salary than any job I had before and I am able to support my growing family with it but I would love to go back to school and pursue my true dream. I don't want my life for my kids, I want them to be able to pursue their dreams to the fullest. To find something they love and chase that with all their being.
Finally as a father I was able to understand what he meant by that lesson all those years ago. Which brings me back to present day, There are so many lessons we will try to teach our kids. Sometimes it baffles the mind why they can't learn certain ones. We have to look back at ourselves and try to remember that the learning curve may have been very steep for us as children. I look back today and appreciate all the things my Dad taught me. All the time we spent together working on cars. Thinking back to those times it helps me tackle the challenges I'm having today. The main thing we can hope is that with constant engagement (riding his A$$) that the lessons will one day be understood~