If a child lives with criticism, he learns to condemn . . .
If a child lives with hostility, he learns to fight . . .
If a child lives with fear, he learns to be apprehensive . . .
If a child lives with pity, he learns to feel sorry for himself . . .
If a child lives with ridicule, he learns to be shy . . .
If a child lives with jealousy, he learns to feel envy . . .
If a child lives with shame, he learns to feel guilty . . .
If a child lives with tolerance, he learns to be patient . . .
If a child lives with encouragement, he learns to be confident . . .
If a child lives with praise, he learns to be appreciative . . .
If a child lives with acceptance, he learns to love . . .
If children live with approval, they learn to like themselves. . .
If a child lives with honesty, he learns what truth is . . .
If a child lives with fairness, he learns justice . . .
If children live with recognition, they learn to have a goal. . .
If children live with sharing, they learn to be generous. . .
If a child lives with security, he learns to have faith in himself and those about him . . .
If a child lives with friendliness, he learns the world is a nice place in which to live . . .
From “Children Learn What They Live: Parenting to Inspire Values” by Dorothy Law Nolte
My son will turn thirty-one years old a little later this year, and while I can see his imperfections, none of them keep this Father from seeing the perfection in him. Watching the joy in his discoveries and successes enrich my life. While the bright newness of life wore off for me a good while ago, seeing my son experience it awakens those old feelings within. Through observing his young adult life, old yearnings come alive and dreams from way back drift frequently into thought.
The son is now inspiring his father as he and I more closely connect as adults making the full circle of what we share more complete. There is no love greater than a parent can feel for a child. I am humbly grateful my life journey includes such a wonderful gift as my ‘boy’.
Your children are not your children.
They are sons and daughters of Life’s longing for itself.
They come through you but not from you.
And though they are with you yet they belong not to you.