Somehow it doesn’t have the same ring as Nirvanas ‘Heart Shaped Box’ but it made me happier that he song did to see that my sone was beginning to enjoy the pleasures of cooking.
Things I want my son to know. Lesson #12 – Have Courage, But don’t be afraid to cry.
“Big Boys Dont Cry”is something I used to hear a lot when I was growing up.
When I was 22, my granddad died peacefully in his sleep. He was someone I loved so much, someone who taught me the art of DIY, allowed me to drive his cars all the time, sit with him and play with him.
I remember getting the news at about 3am when I heard the house phone ring, and I immediately sensed he was gone, and it was confirmed by my mum’s crying. I jumped up in bed and burst into tears. My dad walked past, knocked on the door and saw me crying and said “Let it out now, but be strong when you get to the house” but there was no time. Granddad lived 3 doors from us, so I quickly got changed and had to dry my eyes and “be strong” for my family. Continue reading
Lesson #11- You are You in Everybody.
The golden rule; “Treat others how you too wish to be treated.”
The age old saying of treating others how you wish to be treated was one that I was taught many years ago. It underpins cohesion and almost subtly enforced a social contract that I see you as someone with the shared values as I have and therefore will treat you as I expect to be treated. Continue reading
Lesson #7 – 30 seconds can change your life.
I heard a story about a 23 year old man, who was the sole man in the house looking after his mother, his siblings after his dad left.
As fate would have it, trying to make ends meet he gets into the wrong company and ended up in the wrong place at the wrong time. It took 30 seconds being in the wrong place, and he’s caught by the police, and I jailed for 2 years. Continue reading
Lesson #6- be kind to yourself. Be kind to others.
I was watching an elderly lady who sat down to have a cup of tea today at a coffee shop.. she was by herself and had a walking stick.
I saw another elderly lady, who was sat watching this same old lady. Dressed really well, taken good care of herself and I thought to myself, “I wonder what she’s Thinking?” Continue reading
Lesson #5 – Laugh. Lots.
I have always believed laughter is the best medicine.
My friends will say whiskey is, but I’ve never had a hangover from laughing too much.
Growing up my school friends thought I was weird. I found everything funny. Names, crap jokes, foreign words, a random memory, farting. Continue reading
Lesson #4 – Make it Better.
As he scratched my cheek one morning, Sid saw that it was red and grazed. He asked me “Daddy, have you got aowee?” I said “yes son, you scratched me, remember”.
He followed with, “daddy, shall I make it better?” And then kissed it and blew away the pain.
He does the same with his toys. If he sees a toy broken. He either tries to fix it, or he will tell me to fix it.
To him, right now, everything in this world is fixable.
Son, almost everything you see in the world appears to be disposable. Phones, dishes, cars, clothes, everything.
There was a time that people would fix, rather than buy or replace. But the world seems to have changed.
And we have applied the same rule to people that we have to things. If they’re broken, rather than try and help fix them, we replace them. If a relationship has soured, throw it away and find a new one. If friends let us down, we act out on social media to find new ones rather than understand why they let us down.
Just as you, at this really young age of 2, understand that my pain (which by the way, you caused) could be made to to go away with some effort by yourself, always remember that everything can be fixed with effort.
Make things better. Apply it to your consumables, your toys, your furniture, your microwave, your TV.
But most importantly, apply it to your relationships. If you do anything that hurts someone, or see someone in pain, try and make it better for them. Treat the symptom, but try and get to the root of the pain and help deal with it.
There is a lot to gain in this world when repairing relationships. It builds trust, communcation, love and appreciation.
Take time in these things, they will put you in good stead for life.
Lesson #3 – love your parents. Your first teachers.
As I disciplined Sid following a Weetabix incident (all over the breakfast table) I got the whole “I dont love you daddy”, followed by 2 verses of “I’m not your friend, I don’t like you anymore”.
At this point I realised I have a 12 year old living with us, and I had fast-forwarded 10 years.
Oh crap, here come the teenage hormones.
I began to realise that unconditional love from a parent, as natural as it is, and as pure as it is, isn’t always reciprocated.
Sid is lucky.
He has two parents that love him. Not all kids are that lucky.
I think to myself, as parents, we try to nurture, guide, encourage our kids to be the best version of themselves. To think for themselves, to be compassionate, kind, generous, and big hearted.
That teaching isn’t always met with applaud from your kid!
I learnt a lot from my parents. Resilience, grit, knowing that silence often ends an argument quicker than sound.
Also that the love of parents is beautiful. Untainted. Pure.
Son, you will have many teachers in your life. Your friends, your school teachers, your spiritual teachers and peers.
Remember your first teachers. Your parents.
I hope that we teach you that kindness is a necessity in this world, not a luxury. This world needs it more than ever.
I hope that we teach you that compassion is the key to an enlarged life. Being there for others doesn’t detract from your time or your “busy schedule”, but it adds value to it.
I hope that we teach you that remembering that everything we do, we do for you. We will try to be the best examples of joy, fun, kindness, compassion, empathy, spirituality. Everything we do, we do out of love for you.
You will completely understand it when you have your own.