"Remember, no one can make you feel inferior without your consent." – Eleanor Roosevelt.Inner strength cannot be overstated in parenting. That’s the muscle I want my kids to work the most. Self-confidence is just that, something that originates within and Eleanor Roosevelt was one of the strongest women to take up the mantle of First Lady. I want my children to know that they have earned the right to take up space in this world simply by being themselves and no one can diminish that.
“Enjoy the little things in life, for one day you`ll look back and realize they were big things.” – Kurt VonnegutThe best memories I have of childhood are not trips to Disneyland or five-star hotels or even epic Christmases. They are Saturday mornings with blueberry cinnamon rolls and afternoons picking strawberries from the garden and evenings falling asleep wrapped in a towel at the beach. It’s a shift in mindset to train yourself not to live only for the big stuff, to instead find satisfaction in the small, steady miracles of everyday life.
"Unless someone like you cares a whole awful lot, nothing is going to get better, it's not." – Dr. SeussHis rhymes have reason. Dr. Seuss was not just a writer of catchy children’s book, he was also an activist. He cared, an awful lot, about an awful lot. I want my children to care – to have views that they are willing to stand behind despite the tide of public opinion. I want them to discern what is worth fighting for and then fight for it because they believe it will make a difference and the world can change for the better.
“You never really understand a person until you consider things from his point of view – until you climb into his skin and walk around in it.” – Atticus FinchTo view the world from another person’s perspective is the key to compassion, sympathy, and empathy. It’s how we learn to love others well and not just for our own purposes. Atticus taught Scout to love this way in "To Kill A Mockingbird" and that is what I want for my children.
“Be faithful in small things because it is in them that your strength lies.” – Mother TeresaIf I could coin an aphorism, it would be: “Channel Mother Teresa in all things.” She devoted her life to serving others, to those who had nothing she gave everything. It’s easy to be kind and good when everyone is watching – in the big things where recognition is part of the deal. Of course, kids are going to be good when the teacher is standing right in front of them, ready to dole out praise or punishment. I also want my children to befriend the kid who’s alone on the playground, or tell the truth when a lie would be easier, or listen rather than talk when someone needs to share. Faithfulness in the little stuff goes a long way in making a good heart. We all have our sayings that bring us comfort and truth. We all search for the universal connections to understand our experiences so that we can be part of the whole, a piece of the puzzle. Use these aphorisms or coin your own and let them be part of the light by which your children steer their lives.
It takes a village!
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