The one lesson my dad taught me:
If you’re going to do anything in life, do it right.
Our parents may have had a way of instructing that often bordered on shaming us. No matter what we might remember about it, or them, they meant well. Their own experiences colored how they parented us. This pattern was probably played out in our own parenting, too. We all did the best we could. None of us did a perfect job. But now that we have the time to contemplate the past, we might want to consider forgiving our parents if we still harbor any grudges. Or we might want to make amends to our children or other family members if we are able to see our own failings now.
We made tons of mistakes getting to an older age. Some were intentional; most were not. Do we have to redress all of them? Actually, we don’t even have to acknowledge any of them. But if we do, we’ll feel far better about ourselves and we’ll have helped to break the cycle of the poor parenting we might have experienced.
We all have a chance to do something significant in life. This doesn’t have to mean inventing a tool or a drug that will help millions of people. It’s really quite easy. Smile at a stranger today, for starters. Consider putting aside an old grudge. Apologize for an unkind action.
I can do something really important today. Am I willing to examine how I treat other people?
You are reading from the book:
Keepers of the Wisdom by Karen Casey
Keepers of the Wisdom. Copyright 1996 by Karen Casey. All rights reserved. Printed in the United States of America. No portion of this publication may be reproduced in any manner without the written permission of Hazelden.