15 Things I Never Want My Kids to Forget
Being a parent is thrilling and intimidating at the same time. You are in charge of a person’s physical and emotional wellness. Overwhelming, isn’t it? My mother was great at mommying, though. She always had everything figured out.
Despite being a busy working mum, she never made me feel any less important. The beautiful memories we made together and the important life lessons she taught me are my greatest treasures.
Now that I am a mother, I want to pass these treasures to my kids. I have actually made a whole list of things that I never want my children to forget. Check it out:
1. You Are Different and Different Is Awesome
I was the kind of kid who would eat her lunch alone in the school and be afraid of being a part of big groups. Everyone except my mum thought something was wrong with me.
My son Todd would sometimes get sad thinking he is not “the cool kid” of the school. He is not great at making friends (yet). But I never fail to remind him that he is the coolest five-year-old I have ever seen. It’s OK if he gets nervous around people. I would always want him to remember that his parents think he is awesome just as he is.
2. True Love Isn’t Passe
My husband and I are high school sweathearts. We have been married for 11 years. We have our issues, differences and we fight just like any other couple. But never in front of Todd. Kids are very impressionable.
If they watch their parents fighting all the time, never resolving their issues, it injects the slow poison of the fear of commitment in them. I want our child to remember how his parents always stood by each other through thick and thin. I want him to believe that true love, loyalty, commitment and kindness still exist in this day and age.
3. We Will Always Have Your Back
My mother never grounded me for getting F in high school. She never called me silly for wanting to become a painter instead of an academician (I was born to a family of esteemed academicians, by the way). She and my dad always supported me.
Just like that, I try to be the biggest support system in my son’s life. When he grows up, I want him to remember that no matter what career choice he makes, he will have me and his father standing by his side, cheering for him. We are proud of him and will always be.
4. You Are Always Our First Priority
My husband is a super busy stockbroker and I have to frequently travel around the globe for my exhibitions. We don’t get to be around him most of the time. His nanny takes care of him when we can’t. And we have a Wi-Fi baby monitor installed in his room that lets us keep tabs on him 24×7.
We have been watching him grow on a smartphone screen and it hurts that we can’t be physically around him to witness his formative years. But work is work, it needs to be done. We want him to know that he is the most important thing in the world to us, even though we couldn’t be around him as much we needed to be when he was growing up.
5. Having Another Baby Didn’t Change Anything
I had my daughter, Ana, four months ago. Taking care of a newborn is a huge responsibility. After Todd’s birth, this is the second time I am spending so much time at home. I know he loves his sister dearly but I also know that he secretly wishes I could spend some more time with him.
And I’m trying my best to do that. I hope he never forgets that he is and always will be just as important to me his little sister.
6. Your Dad Loves You Too
My husband has to frequently travel overseas for work. He gets to spend even lesser time with our kids than I do. Little Ana is too little to miss her father right now but Todd is a smart five-year-old. He misses his dad a lot.
However, no matter how busy my husband gets, he always takes time out to Skype them every single day. I know he misses his kids just as much as his kids do. I want them to always remember that their dad was always with them in spirit, even he couldn’t always be physically around.
7. We Are Sorry
I hope Todd and little Ana never forgets that they are the most beautiful thing that ever happened to them. Their mum and dad might have missed many PTA meetings, Christmas and New Year Eves in their childhood but they were truly helpless. We hope our kids would never forget how deeply sorry we are for all those times we couldn’t make it to home.
8. Our Baking Time
I am on leave now. So to make up for all those holidays I couldn’t be around my son, Todd and I spend our weekends baking cookies, his favorite Blueberry pie, and many more delicious treats.
He thinks he bakes the best mint choco-chip cookies in the world and can’t wait for his sister to grow up fast and taste his creation. I want the fond memories of our baking ventures to be etched in his mind forever. I want him to know his mother always has the best time of her life when she is with her kids.
9. Parents Cry Too and That’s OK
My son has watched me cry thrice; once when my mother died, once when my creative block hit the rock bottom and another time after I had a huge fight with my husband. I didn’t hold back my tears in front of my child. I wanted him to see the most vulnerable side of me.
He needs to know that his mum is not a supermum; anyone can have a breakdown and that’s perfectly normal. Crying in front of your kids when you really can’t suppress your feelings actually helps them to open up about their own feelings more easily.
Wait, I’m not done with the list yet. A child needs more than just fond memories of his parents to grow up to become strong, independent and happy adults. Here are a few more things I want my kids to remember whenever they feel they struggle with something in life:
10. Not knowing is OK. There will be times when you will be unable to figure things out. It’s OK not having everything figured out all the time.
11. Being anxious, depressed or simply losing your shit at times is normal. These are normal human emotions and it’s OK to let it out sometimes.
12. People leave. Sometimes we love people with all our hearts but they still choose to leave us. This is inevitable and I want you to remember that it’s not always their fault.
13. Know when to hold or and when to let go. People and things that cause nothing but pain are not worth holding on to.
14. Try kindness. No matter how dark or insensitive the world gets around you, always be kind to people who are kind to you.
15. Don’t let negative criticism stop you from believing in yourself. Even Copernicus was ridiculed for saying that it’s the Earth that orbits the sun and not the vice versa.
As parents, we have the power to shape children’s lives in more ways than we can imagine. Whatever I am today, good or bad, is because of the great memories and lessons my mum left behind with me. I can only aspire to be half of the woman she was. But I’m trying my best and I hope my effort reflects on my kids.
Sujana Wilson is a proud and busy mother of three kids. Check out her website Smilyparents.