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What life lessons has being a parent afforded you? What have you learned from a child/children in your life?

I am endlessly amazed at the growth that I have experienced as a mother of a four year old boy. I know I am my sons first teacher but by golly the things I learn about myself and the world every day!! Such a gift!

I know that children have taught us all something, whether we are a parent or not.

Please share your stories!!

  • Feb 3 2013: I think most of the big lessons I learned about life and living I learned by bringing up our children.

    The big lesson is that people are extremely complicated, complex, and are essentially unknowable. People are what they are, and attempts to apply ideological principles to other people is foolish. Even when we manage to come to some agreement about principles, circumstances can make it impossible to keep that agreement. (Politically, this is reflected in our tradition of civil disobedience.)

    Raising children is far more art than science, and we should proceed humbly, flexibly, prepared to learn and change. I never claimed to be a good father, and never will. My children are all grown up and have their own children, and now they think that I was a great father; but they did not think so during their teens and early twenties, and I think that first assessment was more accurate. (Even so, it sounds good to hear them say it.) All parents should try to be good parents, but that goal is very difficult to define. Always, try to be a loving parent, every moment.
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    Feb 3 2013: Don't know if children exactly teach us, they just live their lives and we learn.
  • Feb 4 2013: I love Sarah's poem.

    I think that having children affords a sneak peek into your past.
    It has also helped me to remember how easy it is to let go of bad feelings after an argument. (forgive and forget)

    My kids will be arguing one minute, and the next they'll be working together on making frozen popsicles from orange juice.

    I have also learned to laugh more, and sing more........we break out in song all the time.....One of our favorites, which we know by heart:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2EQt_xFOGN8

    I have also learned to listen.....really listen. Because you know how sometimes you are doing the dishes and your mind is 100 miles away, and your son is standing in the kitchen rattling away about their favorite toy or cartoon show, and you're like "uhuh....uhuh....." and then you smell smoke?.........well, sometimes your kid is trying to tell he that he set fire to his legos while playing by mistake....LOL. Just kidding...but you get the point right?
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    Feb 3 2013: Setting expectations on yourself is fine, but setting expectations on others only leads to heartbreak. Just love them, and let them set their own expectations. That's what parenting has taught me.
    • Feb 3 2013: I agree. . . a quote that verbalizes this truth so well

      Respect is not fear and awe; it...[is]the ability to see a person as he is, to be aware of his unique individuality. Respect, thus, implies the absence of exploitation. I want the loved person to grow and unfold for his own sake, and in his own ways, and not for the purpose of serving me. [Eric Fromm]
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    Feb 5 2013: This isn't a life lesson, per se, but being a parent has taught me the true depth of unconditional love that one can experience.

    Being a parent has given me a new perspective on the fact that we all started out as children. Now when I look at adults, I am often reminded that they, too, were once children. It has altered my view of humanity. For example, now when I see a homeless person, I think, "That person was once a little baby, and maybe he was deeply loved by someone else." In another way, it reminds me that we are always children inside, capable of childlike wonder and curiosity, but also the selfishness and intolerance of a child as well.
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    Feb 4 2013: From father I learnt

    To succeed one need aim high...to be happy one need to look below..

    From kids continuously I am learning that I don't know much as uanble to answer their curious questions..
  • Feb 4 2013: I have learned that I can, if watched very very carefully, and if reminded of and queried about the instructions on the side of the box, make macaroni and cheese --almost-- as good as Mommy.
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    Feb 3 2013: Where there is abundant love in all directions, near miracles are possible. Can't get more specific.