Friday, 29 May 2015

What 10 things would you tell your kids?

Read a very interesting article this week .... if you could tell your kids 10 things .... what would it be .... and obviously various people, given the vast differences in their kid's ages ..... gave a wide variety of answers.  I also had an interesting conversation with a friend today about teenagers and how I felt that COMMUNICATION is the number 1 tool (and I have a 16 yr old and a 20 yr old).  And that listening is part of that.  Not waiting for your child's lips to stop moving so you can butt in .... but listening and actually hearing what they are saying.  It does not matter how old they are, at every age they are allowed to have an opinion and their own thought process.  Listening goes a long way in cementing this relationship. 

So the 10 things I would tell my 16 year old son: 

  1. Always be a gentleman (he is).  Opening doors, letting ladies walk first, pulling out her chair for her to sit.  Be this.  Even if she is not ladylike, you be a gentleman. 
  2. Go to church - we do now.  But do it forever.  You love your religion.  You love our parish.  Let God always be the guiding light in your decisions.  
  3. Be a man of your word.  If you say you will do something, do it.  Be a man of honour. 
  4. Respect your time and respect other people's time. 
  5. Be impassioned in everything you do.  When you do something don't skate along the surface ... immerse yourself in it. 
  6. Be well read.  Newspapers, books, internet ... however you do it .... build your general knowledge so that you are able to converse comfortably about a vast array of subjects.  It will stand you in good stead in any conversation throughout your life.
  7. Always remember the biggest lesson I taught you .... there is always someone worse off than you in life, even in times that things go really badly .... always look behind you .... and help that person. 
  8. Never judge other people.  Never tell them what they should have, could have, or what you would have done in their situation.  You cannot comment until you have walked in their shoes.  Be respectful.  You are brilliant at this with people. 
  9. Be humble.  
  10. Be You.  You are a damn fine kid. 

And what would I tell my daughter: 

  1. You have always chased your dream to be a chef.  Now you have finally slogged your way to that achievement.  Never stop chasing your big dream .... you fly.  You always do. 
  2. Work wisely with your money now that you earn an income. Save. 
  3. Be a woman of your word.  Walk the Talk.  Be honourable. 
  4. Remember always #7 on your brother's list 
  5. Remember always #8 on your brother's list
  6. Love.  With all your heart.  Your family, your friends, all your important people ... it is a beautiful gift to give those you care about. 
  7. Be world wise .... be knowledgeable .... be able to talk on many subjects. 
  8. Remember to find God in all you do.  He is there all the time and even with your crazy work hours ... you know you just have to close your eyes ... He is there. 
  9. Visit often. 
  10. Be You.  You are an awesome girl. 

Till soon 
c'est la vie xxxx

Sunday, 10 May 2015

What I said Yes to

Yesterday I went on a "moms" retreat and one of the talks was on "when we say Yes to motherhood, what are we saying yes to?" - it had a profound effect on me to write down what it is exactly .... whilst sitting in silence next to a beautiful water feature, by myself, with only my head and my heart as my companions. 

Having written that, I last night started to wonder about other things ....or contemplating as Francis told us ... which is it seems "looking at with love".... I was looking at (with love) what we say Yes to when we say yes to marriage ... and what are we saying Yes to when we say yes to a choice of career / job / work. 

Motherhood's yes was very easy ... I filled 5 pages of the notebook yesterday ... I said Yes to - a job you cannot resign from, a job with no leave, the first step, the first tooth, the first school day, the first heartbreak, first all kinds of things.  I said Yes to rolling eyes, slamming doors, laundry with no end, loving hugs, homework that you cannot assist with as you just do not get Maths.  Also Yes to job decisions, matric exams all over again, sports matches, advice, shouting and driving 4583 kms a year fetching and carrying.  I said yes to carrying my heart outside my body forever and I have loved every moment. 

Which led to the other things I thought of last night, outside of the retreat ... 

When I said Yes to marriage I said Yes to a lifetime with one person, our own private jokes, someone who knows how you like your coffee, arguments, rolling eyes, slamming doors, someone who makes the school sarmies, someone with the most amazing general knowledge ... I said Yes to, someone who cannot understand how another person can a) read so much and b) love tv so much .... Yes to a lifetime with a Liverpool supporter, someone who hangs his clothes over my towel, a fun person to play against in 30 seconds, someone who has the ability to overwhelm our kids with love and attention.  I said Yes to snoring, blanket sharing and someone who is tenacious and handles life's blows without complaining.  I said Yes to someone who always knows where the matches are during loadshedding, drains the pool for us annually, runs an informal soccer club every Sunday without every say no to our son .... the list is 28 years endless. 

Which led to work ... I said Yes to learning more about my religion in 2 years than I have in the last 47.  I said Yes to crazy days and crazier days, births and deaths and babies being baptised, learning how a radio show works, great office cappuccino, a boss who answers my 3234 questions a day and laughs because I walk into his office and take up on a conversation we were having 3 weeks previously (without any preamble or warning).  I said Yes to meeting tons of people, become entrenched in the daily life of the parish, I said Yes to days of great laughter and days of great frustration.  Yes to a happy place to spend my working life - yes to insight into the calling of Priesthood, to meeting dozens of Priests and knowing Archbishops and a Cardinal.  It was a very good Yes. 

What have you said Yes to? 

Till soon 

K xx 

2019 - new beginnings and other excitement

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