sideline parenting (11 of 12) — chip of the old block
September 23, 2008 2 Comments
The superior man blames himself,. The inferior man blames others. (Don Shula, former Miami Dolphins coach)
Q: What do you see when you watch your son/daughter as he/she is walking?
A: Probably a similar version of the way you walk.
Q: How many times a day do you hear, “Oh he/she looks just like you!” ?
A: Chances are, everytime you are seen together.
Q:When was the last time you saw your son perform an amazing feat of skill and said” “Thats my boy/girl!”?
Its kinda spooky sometimes, isn’t it? They take on the same shape as we do. They pick up the same mannerisms. They like the same stuff that you do. They watch the same stuff you watch. They have the same sense of humor as you. They start to sound like you. They share the same views as you do. They even release audible discharges of intestinal gas just like you.
Kinda like God and his Son.
Not too many years ago, I noticed something that was ridiculously disturbing. I would watch the interactions of my son with his sister and realized an unmistakable reality. I witness something that was slightly disturbing yet undeniably familiar. It was something that made me a bit uneasy, but was recognizable to myself and others.
He was a bit of a wiseguy.
He was briliant with it. Quick witted, smart, funny. His timing was great and his delivery was flawless. He was as confident and courageous as Marcus Aurelius running into battle. But at the same time, he was as hurtful, undermining, and thoughtless. He was deliberately doing what came instinctively to him when faced with certain situations. He was using his gifts for bad stuff to produce something similar to the foul stench that eminates the neather region that was spoke of 12 sentences ago.
So, where did my son learn THAT stuff? (Think Dr. Evil and Mini Me)
I learned, from watching my son, that I had to better asses my actions in different situations, and if it was to be believable, it could not just be when I was in front of him. My son was not at fault here. He was just doing what he was taught by watching his fearless leader tackle adverse situations. He was just picking up habits from the guy he ‘looked up to’ the most. He was simply emulating his closest, most convenient, and most repetitive example of how to take on the world.
You see, what I saw was not a dishonorable, insensitive, narrow minded son. What I really saw was a reflection. What I saw was him searching for answers based on the information he had to choose from. What I realized was that he was testing the waters and looking for something to help give himself definition as his own man.
So we talked and talked and talked and talked and talked about it over time. But nothing worked better than ME simply showing him examples of better ways to handle himself in different situations. Like talking to his mother or his sister. Like talking about my parents. Like dealing with authority. Like praying. Like reacting like a grown up when crap doesn’t go my way…
I find that I am more proud of my son, when I am most proud of myself!
Fathers, do not exasperate your children; instead, bring them up in the training and instruction of the Lord.