Wednesday, September 29, 2010

The Essentials

For the past 6 months I've been volunteering for the Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation CIBC Run For The Cure. In that time I've heard a lot of positive, uplifting stories and I've also  heard a few sad ones. It really made me start to think about my kids and what things I'd like to instill in them, what things I'd really want to carry over if something should ever happen to me. I know some of you might think that's a bit negative or morbid but it's just a reality that it does happen to some people and we just all hope and pray it's not us.

Anyway, here's some of the things that came to the top of my mind as the 'essentials' I hope my kids learn from me:

1. Kindness, empathy, and understanding. To me these things are more important than being the smartest kid in the class. I hope they will be able to look at all situations in life, all types of people, all types of religion and politics and view them with respect and compassion.

2. Manners - to me it's basic human decency to say 'thank you', to give a wave, to hold a door open, to give a smile to someone who does the same for you. My goodness what a different world this would be if everyone could do such basic things. I'm really hoping my kids will understand the value of being polite!

3.  Giving - this goes along with #1. I hope that my children see that by having empathy and understanding of others, you also really see the needs in our community. I want them to not just see the need but to feel a drive to help alleviate that need. It doesn't matter to me what projects they choose as important to them, but that they find organizations that speak to them and they feel driven to help them. 

4. Family and Friends. Nothing is as important as a strong family connection, they are the ones there with you for life. I hear of so many fighting families and I think it's heartbreaking, especially when some of the issues are relatively small in comparison to the years of work put into the relationship. Friends are along the same basis, some friendships grow more or less important over time but you never know when they could turn the other way and you might be in need of that friendship, or they might be in need of yours.

5. Love of everything non-academic! I know, it's probably the opposite thing that you'll hear from most parents. I figure they'll get enough pressure from David to perform in school but what I want to instill in my children is balance. Yes, doing well in school is important but so is reading novels, writing, sports, music, art, etc, etc.  You never know when you might have the next Mia Hamm, Hemingway, or John Williams on your hands, and you will never know unless you encourage them to explore the other things that they enjoy or just get them to try new things.

All in all I want my children to be well rounded and I hope this is something that they can learn from me. What things do you wish your children will pick up from you?

1 comment:

  1. P.S. If you're wondering 'What is she WEARING??' in the photo above, our team is called Bright Lights for the Relay For Life & we all wear tacky bright clothes :)