a quick lesson

here is a quick lesson. don’t punish kids like the old days. in the old days, we were grounded, cars taken away, complete isolation from our friends. this is not the way to go, especially when it comes to important events like homecoming or prom. so many times a parent reacts quickly and severely – if a kid does something wrong – we punish them by taking away or limiting one of these important events. don’t do this. it will only leave a bad memory for the rest of their lives. they will never forget the time you took it all away at one of their most important moments in their young lives. what you should do is let them go to the event 100% – no restrictions – do not interfere with this memory. and you talk to them calmly and let them know that you do not approve of what they did. you are not disappointed, but you do not approve. you need to let them think about what they have done and over time they will change to make smarter choices in the future. talking to them, reasoning with them is the way to go – rather than severe punishment that will alter their memories in a negative way. this is a new train of thought – try it out.

teens

as kids enter teens – you quickly start to see the attitude changes and the opportunity for parent/teen conflicts goes up 1000%. you are appalled by their behavior towards you – so you lash out at them – you yell more – you might even call them names without thinking. it happens fast and before you know it – you have acted rough towards them and you feel regretful immediately. you need to apologize to them quickly and keep telling them to care more for others, especially family. as you have heard forever – these are the trying times until they get older and start being nice again. you just need to take it slower – recognize that you are over-reacting – and be more patient. bite your tongue and don’t lash out as much – it will help avoid bad memories in the future.

the talk

not including the “no premarital sex” path followed by some and just focusing on “the talk” that you give your teenagers – this is how it should go:

you want to be very clear and very blunt – and you want to definitely give it to them by 16 – when they start more serious dating. we all know what teens are capable of regardless of what they tell you. you want to tell them that things can happen and they need to be prepared – and they need to tell their parents the truth – to a certain extent – so everyone is on the same page and no mistakes are made. there comes a time when you realize time is going fast with your kids, especially when they hit 16 and approach 18. you have to give up the long held belief that nothing will happen until they are 18 and legally adults. things will happen before then and as they get closer and closer to 18, there is less and less you can do about it. so instead, be straight with them about the perils they could face and even advise them to take precautionary measures. reality is reality and it is what it is – no time to dance around the subject – get to the point and make an impact with your words.

when it goes

when you see the mind start to go – it is a sad and terrible thing – especially in a parent. they can still talk to you and conversations are easy – but the confusion starts and the memory loss kicks in. though you can converse, there is not much detail anymore – general answers only. they can still eat, shower, read, clean up, dress – all the usual things in the normal way. but you do see the mind go a bit – repeating questions, repeating observations. you start to realize that things will never be the same. they can’t be alone anymore, they can’t remember to do the key things of each day – they can’t remember to eat or take their medicine – so even if they can do all the other things – if you don’t eat or take your meds – that is a problem – and it requires people to be there and to help get these things done to survive. as the child of the parent that is starting down this no-return path – you start to think about how will you set up the next stage for your parent – how do you make all the decisions – where will they live, how will they live – in a home or at home with the family. how much money is there to make these changes happen – to transition into this unfortunate phase. it happened quite fast – 6 months ago there was some forgetfulness – no biggie at the time – comes with older age – could last for years – but then in a flash – getting lost while driving the usual route, wandering down the street a bit, not getting dressed entirely – unusual things happening – and next thing you know, they are staying in your guest room and going home does not seem like a clear option anymore. you have to face it because they can’t face it anymore – their mind is in the last battle – trying to keep things normal but also knowing something is wrong which they can’t explain because it is their own mind that is confused – it is a never ending loop of confusion and the eyes are not as engaged as before – there is now a distance to them – brought on by this unseen confusion. you start to realize that when you talk with them, it won’t be remembered so you are really talking to yourself but it gives you comfort to hear them agree with you even though they don’t understand anymore. when you see the mind start to go, you realize that there is change coming – for them and for you

Cel

He was a generous man
He was a kind and caring man
He was a loyal man to his friends and family
He was a calm man
He was a thinking man
He was a very wise man
He took care of his family through and through – they had no needs or wants for Cel provided for everything
Cel was a very responsible man
He was a determined man
He was a man on a mission
He was a very accomplished man
He knew how to act in every situation
Friends and family looked up to him – and looked to him for guidance – for the right thing to do
Cel was an honest man and he didn’t need to say much to make you understand what he was thinking
He was a teacher as well – helping people along
If he had your back – you felt safe – he protected us all
He has taught us all lessons – we all have stories of how we learned from Cel

Cel is a man that will not be forgotten
He is a man that will be revered
We are all grateful to have Cel in our lives
Thank you Cel for everything you have done for us
We were lucky to have you

every child is different

you cannot compare one child to the next, you cannot compare one sibling to the next.  each child has his/her own personality.  each child has strengths and each child has weaknesses – just like every other person on this earth.  your sibling is good at this and you are good at that.  you have to recognize your strengths and weaknesses and you have to embrace them.  you cannot compare yourself to others.  you will live the life your are supposed to live.  one might take a traditional path and be very happy – and another might take the path less traveled and be happy.  one might go to this college and one might go to that college – and both can be very happy with their path.  one might take this job and one might take that job – both being happy.  one might live in the country and one might live in the city – both happy.  do not compare yourself to others – because you are not them and they are not you.  otherwise you will be miserable over something you cannot control.

real beauty

the real beauty is there hidden deep below the outer beauty.  you see the outer beauty – you love the outer beauty – you move forward with the outer beauty – it dictates all the early moves in life.  but as time goes on, you start to see the real beauty of a person – you start to see just how beautiful they really are – in the things they do, in the things they say – in all the moves they make in life – in all the action they take – you see their real beauty.  this is the beauty that sustains a relationship, a marriage, a partnership.  you don’t even know that you see this real beauty because you are too close – but then one day it hits you.  you are in love with the real beauty of this person.  they are real and they are with you and they are beautiful.  the outer beauty can wane – but the real beauty flourishes and grows – you see it blossoming higher and higher.  when you see this real beauty – you don’t think about outer beauty as much – you don’t look around as much – you only see the real beauty next to you and you want more and more – there is no reason to look for outer beauty.  look at the person next to you and see the real beauty – see the person that has been through all the ups and downs with you – and see how their real beauty has surfaced and pushed you through these things.  when you know this and see this – you will never look away again.

looking back

when you look back past your life and all the way back to your parents’ lives – to when they met and got married – and then you see the path they took and you see how old they were – and you then compare to your life, to your age at certain parts of your path – you then start to realize how young your parents were when they got married, when they had kids, why they had marital troubles if they did – why they might have divorced – you start to see it all very clearly.  you think about what you did in your 20s – and how getting married and having kids in early-mid 20s might have been major challenges to a relationship.  you then see the paths they took and then you see that their lives did not always end in glory or in a way ever imagined.  they had dreams too – they wanted to get to a comfortable place too.  they wanted to be safe and secure – they wanted to succeed.  they are just like you – they are only human – their paths changed too – they are just trying to hold on to life like you – they are trying to keep their grip every day.  it is a funny thing when you really look back at your parents’ lives and you compare to yours and you see what they had to do and you see what you have to do – and these are the secrets not always revealed – you just have to look and compare – and you will understand more about you and about them.

family business

don’t talk about money or finances all the time – especially at home.  look – you have this business whether you realize it or not – it is called the family business.  it is not the family business definition you know – where a family runs a business to make money in the outside world.  this is the business of running the finances for your family.  you have incoming and outgoing – they go up, they go down.  you have an active budget that needs reviewing and tweaking all the time.  this is your family business.  i am not going to get into the ins and outs of this family business in this post.  i am only going to focus on is when you discuss the family business with your family at home.  for the kids it is good to go over the family business so they have an understanding of responsibility, frugality, etc.  but for the spouse – yes you should discuss the family business on occasion but mostly to make sure bills are getting paid – money is coming in, etc.  you should not talk about the bills, the finances all of the time or everyday.  this will become a burden on the relationship and one that will lead to the ultimate demise of the partnership.  don’t talk about the family business that much – keep it to a minimum – because this will only lead to fights over things that will work on their own as long as you keep working and you keep paying your bills.  stop talking so much!

you have to be bored

what can you do.  you have hit the mid-life phase.  you have family, wife to work for.  you can’t just quit your job.  you have to keep working no matter what – to keep the train going.  you also want to see your family as much as possible.  you don’t want a job that has you traveling all over.  you want to grab these fleeting days/weeks/months/years with your kids before they fly the coop for good.  you have to make that your main focus.  to do this, you must sometimes do jobs that are not as exciting as the ones you had in the past.  the jobs that were in the big city – things were moving fast.  you never watched the clock.  you had less stress in all areas.  kids were very young – stared at them all weekend – they were the entertainment.  now they are growing up – becoming more expensive – you want to see them as often as possible – so you stay in your current job.  this is to pay the bills – to see them – to keep things going – until they go to college.  you have to make sacrifices.  you have to be bored with your job – you have to accept the boredom – you have to accept the monotony of the job.  you have to get that check every 2 weeks.  you have to suck it up and keep going.  you have to do this for the family.  this you must learn.  you can’t just jump from job to job.  you have to be precise in your movements.  you have to be precise in your judgement.  you have to be methodical in your jumping.  you have everything hanging on you.  they are not letting go – they are getting heavier by the year.  you must slog on.  you must be bored.  you have to be bored.  it is a marathon.  be bored, push on – change will come when the time is right or when you wake up one day and say enough is enough.  but do you really have a choice.  yes, but only a calculated choice now – no more missteps – you can’t afford it now.  maybe later.