30 April 2009
You CAN ...CHANGE the script for a better part
No, I am not placing blame, but just stating the facts. I can say that today, we have so many resources available to us to help us to empower our minds and our will. IF you are ideal, in perfect order, then I send you my praises, and say, "good for you!" We are all works in progress throughout our lifetimes. However, if you are not ideal, and you resist these tools to better yourself, I say, "you are missing out on something huge, and you are hurting yourself."
Many of us can look to our childhood, yours truly included, and realize that we were programmed incorrectly, perhaps on purpose, or perhaps just because our parents did not know better. Not to knock them, they did the best they can, but the real matter is, we have to reinvent what we were taught.
As an adult, I have come to learn a lot about my very own childhood, one that I tell many was a good childhood, but honestly speaking, it was a childhood filled with it's share of dysfunction. A dysfunction that was considered, "normal."
I had hard working parents -- role models yes? They were business partners, and had some respect for one another. However, they differed immensely. My father, was a doer, a believer in the Obama ideal, "Yes we can!" He carried this throughout his life and still lives by that decree to this day. I think I inherited some of those "yes I can" genes from him given the way my life has played out, and how I have strived to keep my head up, my health in tact, and my attitude bright despite all my adversities! This is my life and I would never allow outside forces or people to topple it down against my will!
My mother was a hardworker and one to be admired by anyone outside looking in. However, behind the scenes, something was going on that I had no idea about and I have come to learn in recent years that my father lived with his OPPOSITE. Do opposites attract? I don't know if I can believe in that, but I know that these opposites paved the way to the person I am today, as well as my twin sister.
How in the world can you go through life, with a partner who believes in "I CAN'T" and still manage to be successful? How do you stare at the face of someone who carries the dark, conspicuous (yes conspicuous because I look back and remember her sad face) mask of "Hopelessness," and feel inspired wanting to try anyway for more than 30 something years?
I think something greater than my father managed to conceal my mother's true personality from us because as a child growing up, I don't recall (this could just be old age/my memory limits) perceiving my mother as a "quitter," or a "pessimist."
As parents, we need to stop and think about our REAL day-to-day existence in the midst of our children. We need to really understand that even if our children are going about their lives, with school, their activities, their friends, smiling in front of us, enjoying whatever we do for them, wearing nice clothes, having all the great gadgets and toys.... in between ALL of that, we are also imprinting OUR mindsets in their subconscious. Do not for a moment think otherwise.
We love to say things like, "My daughter is just like me," and "my son is just like is father," or vice versa. We think it's just "cool" to brag about the relevance of our children to ourselves as parents. This notion gives credence to the fact that they are indeed, "our children." But wait.......should that be your goal??
Who are you as a parent? Who are you as a person????????? Do you possess joy in your heart? Do you share your love? Do you love yourself??? Do you set an example to your children by doing, trying, striving, loving, living, caring, giving, being positive throughout?
I remember growing up being told, "No you can't play basketball because sports are a waste of time." I also heard,"no you can't wear that, it does not suit your body," and "you can't do that, people like us don't do that sort of thing." Sometimes, I remembering hearing (being told to me, or my sister), "You will never be able to.........." Wow. It was "Parenting 101" back in the 70s..80s.. and it's what they knew. But it was sealing a false notion that could linger FOREVER, that says, "don't aspire for certain things," because for one reason or another, "it's not for you." It was a set up for defeat in life, relationships, career, health.... you name it!
In hindsight, I realize that in the past 10 years or more of my life, I was fighting something and I did not know what it was, but I knew I had to fight. My life had it's many obstacles, challenges, disappointment, and in the midst of it all, I sought to find the courage to not let it keep me down.
I have recently learned that my upbringing truly could have forced me into a different direction, and I wonder if I would have been able to find myself to THIS place where I am at today. My mother and I were great friends for a great part of my life. I remember being in my early 20s, working on Wall Street and not letting a day go by that I did not speak to her. She was like my best friend. I found comfort in her. She saved me a few times from situations that I thought were incredibly challenging. Just the way you want a mother to be...... THERE for YOU. You can't imagine, and one day, I shall write that book to tell the entire story.
However, while I was lost in my woes and happy to have her to cling to for moments of each of my days, I failed to realize where SHE was at. Throughout my teen years until I was in my 30s, my mother was unhappy being married. I first thought she was unhappy with my father, however it was a bit hard to accept that since my father was good about keeping us in a nice home (along with her efforts), happy and living a pretty good life. I just thought, she just does not like being married. Some marriages just don't work.
Overtime I learned, that it was ALWAYS her "I CAN'T" attitude that plagued her, possibly had her depressed during various parts of her life and still now. For years when I was in my teens, she suffered with major back problems and I remember staring at her laying on the floor (since she could not get into a bed) crying in agony about the pain, all the while repeating that "she can't get up, can't move, can't do anything." She eventually found out about nutrition and helped with some of her issues, but she still needed more HELP. Today she listens to the news, she sees one side of things... the bad side. She believes in one spirituality.... "HOPELESSNESS." She still needs empowerment and wellness to overcome her attitude. It's all about a choice and following through.
I know in MY heart that there are many parents out there TODAY, especially now amidst these times we are living in, who are emitting this same (or similar) mindset/attitude, daily in their household for their children to soak up and carry in their souls. Some have lost jobs, some have illnesses, some just don't make enough money, or some are just bothered by the economy and our government .... and all are letting these OUTSIDE elements create a mindset that is debilitating, defeatist and toxic to themselves and their children. The "I CAN'Ters" are still chanting loudly, while not offering or seeking a single solution for something better. How can this help?
If you think that you can justify telling your child that you are angry or giving up because of what is going on around you ... and think "they understand," you are wrong. You are not making them more mature. You are not teaching them reality. That is not reality because reality is what you choose to do and believe... not what is being done. This is a changed world, and we need to change for the better.
It's tough --- I know firsthand.... Life is the biggest challenge. But, don't consciously make it the legacy you leave for your children. We must TRY, we must DO.... we must have HOPE....
Today, I thank God for (a) allowing me to absorb some of my father's qualities, (b) for allowing me the time to have embraced my mother when I needed her, (c) for realizing what NOT to do as a Mother raising children.
Daily, I tell my children to try .... before they mistakenly think they can't. In my house, CAN'T is the DIRTIEST 4 letter word. Keep that obscenity out of your life, and away from your children. Give them all the encouragement you CAN. Consider that, what you for yourself for them to SEE, and what you do for them today, may just make their lives that much better and healthier tomorrow.
Re-write your Life Script!