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I am a pretty intuitive person apparently, and that means that I do things because I know they are good to do, but it also means I do things because they feel good to do. It felt good and right to start speaking to the parents of young children in a deliberate and pointed way. Literally, one day I woke up and told myself that this was what I wanted to do. I had been a member of a mom’s club when my children were little and I do recall thinking at the time that I watched speakers stand in front of us and share their ideas, that I would like to do that myself some day. So when the idea came to me years later, I went ahead and assigned myself that task and once I got it into my head I couldn’t keep myself away. My intuitive self grabbed on and started sending out emails before I really knew where I was headed.

So now that’s what I do. I locate clubs where parents of young children gather, I send them my outline, direct them to my blog, and ask if they’d like to have me in. And then during my talk I tell them about my own childhood, about how after a childhood of mom staying home with the kids I faced an adulthood that didn’t look that happy. How it hadn’t really gone right at home and it wasn’t because of some big trauma I had to get over, like a divorce or a death or something. It was about the little stuff all adding up to me never feeling like anyone had invested in my life. Like no one really cared about me. Whether that is what happened or not, whether my interpretation of my childhood is ‘right’ or not doesn’t matter, because it is the perception I had, and it colored my life for years.

The power parents hold over their children is immense, and it is easy to fail to recognize it. By the same token it is just as easy to be a good steward of that power and bring to your children and to your family a light that can shine forever forward by investing deliberately in the relationships you build. The thing is, childhood is fleeting, and finite, and you only get the chance once to get it right, so my message is to be conscious of your opportunity, value the gift you have been given, and be there for your kids while you can.

Any one out there, agree?

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