This weekend I was going through an old scrapbook I had. It had lot of high school sports clippings. Clippings from the newspaper, and academic clippings as well. And it had a lot of old birthday cards from a great aunt, seemingly every postcard I ever received or bought on a vacation, and you can start to see I had a pretty great upbringing – focused on staying active, and academics. Surrounded by good experiences and a great family. Other people should be so lucky.
But it made me sad or bad to have forgotten a lot of those memories. Memories that may be stuck in the back of my head somewhere or only brought up with the postcard purchased. And I guess I’m not good at emotions because all I can come up with is “bad” or “sad”.
But to have forgotten these feels like I’ve let down those who enabled the vacations and the successes. My father said, “Like is cumulative and Life builds upon itself” and he’s right. You don’t get to just flip a switch one day and know calculus. You build that knowledge. But it was some stories of my dad’s dad that taught me something I want to pass on today. The end result of those stories is that my grandfather has a relentless drive forward. Rarely looking backward. I thought it was odd that he didn’t reminisce a lot or talk about the past. But he chooses to live forward. What’s happened has happened. And that’s a lesson our kids teach us as well, as kids don’t hold onto those grudges from yesterday’s recess.
So if we’re being taught this lesson from generations before and generations after us; maybe there’s something we can learn. Maybe we’re a bit off here in the middle.
So as your kids get older, keep this trait in them. If they’re mad – ask them what they can do to calm themselves down now.
If they’re anxious, ask them what they can do to control their future.
And if they’re happy – ask them how we as adults can do that too.