When a person tells me, “I want to give my children a better life. A much better life than my parents gave me.”, this better life meaning a financially better life, I become worried. Because the next generation, our children, will be the most depressed generation yet. And money alone, will not work for them. It will kill them even before they have lived.
I’m yet to hear someone say, ” I want to give my children an emotionally better life. To be more present in my children’s lives than my parents were in mine.” If you are not happy with how your parents emotionally raised you, why not change that with your children? Why repeat the script over and over again?
Your daughter tells you that she is afraid to talk to you because of your terrible temper and instead of listening to her, you brush her off, “that is how I am, there is nothing I can do about it.” Your son cannot have a conversation anytime he wants to with you because you need to be tipsy first to have one. How you are raised and wired should not be an excuse of how you should raise your children.
The only time you talk to your father is when you are talking about your grades, school fees, your necessities, “sasa toothpaste kubwa ni ya nini? Kwani mdomo yako ni ya ng’ombe?” And the only time you talk to your mother is when she is delegating duties in the house: hizo vyombo nikirudi jioni nizipate hapo, sawa? Or when she is repremanding you, “si ata afadhali ningezaa kufuli, juu nikirudi nyumbani nitaipata ikiningoja. Sasa hii ni saa ngapi unafika na giza?”
Again, if you are not happy with how your parents emotionally raised you, why not change that with your children?
Robin Sharma writes in his book, The Monk Who Sold His Ferrari: The best gift you could ever give your children is your love. Get to know them again. Show them that they are far more important to you than the fleeting rewards of your professional career. Pretty soon they will be off, building lives and families of their own. Then it will be too late, the time will be gone.
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