Sunday, March 29, 2015

SOLC #29 Four Things I Learned from My Father

The Slice of Life March Challenge is hosted by Two Writing Teachers.

It is hard to believe that this month is almost over.  I look forward to warmer weather and all things which accompany it, but I will miss the daily connection of writing with my tribe.

Today I read a post from Greg Armamentos, and as usual, his words created havoc on my heart - and I don't mean that unkindly.  His words stir my emotions and ignite my thinking. His words inspired my post again today.  If you have not read "Hey Dad" then please take the time to read it and you will understand what I mean.

I had a strained relationship with my father from my childhood up until the day he died.  I wrote about it here and and here.  I know the mom and the wife that I am today is because of who my father wasn't.  Many times parents do not know their children are watching and learning from their actions and their words, but we do and I did.

 Here are four things I learned from my father:

Love equally - I have two children and I love them equally.  They both reside in the same amount of space in my heart - no more or no less than the other.  Every single day.

Love and respect the other parent - My husband and I may not always agree with the decisions we make as parents and as a couple.  But I know the best thing I can do for my children, is to love and respect their dad and to model that love every single day.

Make memories - when my children are asked about their favorite childhood memory, I not only want them to have a positive memory, I want them to have a difficult time choosing just one. Children grow up so fast and in the blink of an eye, I am facing the empty nest.  I know their time left at home is less than the time I have spent with them, but I still continue to make memories with them every single day.

Being a mom is not the same thing as being a mother - being a mom means being "there."  A mother is simply being.  A mom is there for everything...athletic and music events, wiping tears and mending hearts, fixing favorite meals on special days, tucking in and staying up waiting for them to come home, watching their favorite television shows, letting them pick the place to eat, sharing their dreams and praising their accomplishments, smiling with them and smiling because of them every single day.

I cannot change my childhood, but I am thankful for the lessons I learned about being a wife and a mom.  Life is short.  Enjoy every single day.


  1. Your lessons inspire me to give all my effort to be the best ad I can be. I'm making memories, but sometimes wonder about the quality of those memories. I work for harmony in the home, but it can be an elusive target. Thank you for your vulnerability - we each learn and grow from one another.

  2. It's admirable that you are seeing the good things you learned from your father, whether it's what to do or what not to do, still it's learning, Leigh Anne. I missed both those other posts, & am sorry about what he missed, see that you are too. There are a few parents I've had of students through the years that I could shake & want so much to tell them that life to too short to be so demanding that your child perform, etc. I wish they knew what they were missing too. Thanks for such a thoughtful post.

  3. I read all of the posts Leigh Anne and am struck by your heart and glad you find lessons and good from all you did not say. It is the every day that can be difficult with difficult people, even if they are parents or family. Those daily moments add up to an infinite memory--irreplaceable.

  4. So true - you cannot change your childhood. The power of your reflection and writing here is that you choose to take and not take from the experience to be your own daughter and mother. You are brave!

  5. Between Greg's post and yours, I'm a blubbering mess! Both of you have taken hurtful relationships and instead of making you bitter, you've somehow made a blessing out of it. This might seem like a weird connection, but I just finished Liesl Shurtliff's Rump: The True Story of Rumpelstiltskin, and at one point a troll is telling Rump about an apple tree that the rest of the trolls think is poisonous because the tree grew from a poisonous seed. All the trolls avoid the apples, but Bork eats one anyway and tells Rump, "Poison doesn't have to grow from poison." He teaches Rump that he is not trapped in the bad decisions and magic his mother was trapped in. He can make his own choices. The kids and I had a great conversation about that. You've chosen

    1. Sorry - I hit publish before I meant to. You've chosen a better path, and that's so brave and powerful!!

  6. We all struggle with some sort of relationship issues in this complexities of living our lives. The persevering and forgiving is such an important lesson to share.

  7. Every single day you show your kids what it means to be a parent. The life before allowed you to be the mom you are now. What wonderful lessons you will pass on to your children.

  8. I love Greg's blog too and I'm glad to have found yours. Your post cased me to stop and reflect about my father too. Beautiful post!