Life Lesson #126… Be respectful to everyone!

handshake-442908_1280

 

Life Lesson #126 … Be respectful to everyone!

It is a necessity in life to be kind and respectful to everyone.  It does not matter who you are or where you come from. I have always taught this to my kids. Yet, since they began adolescence I often wondered if they ever heard a word I said.  From the onset of puberty they have lashed out to me more than anyone else.  I was told that this is because my love is unconditional.  Maybe so, but it still hurts.  I always questioned if they were as rude to others as they are to me.  And even though I never asked, I have been told by many adults who know them, how kind and respectful they are.  Not only have I been pleasantly surprised but greatly relieved.  Someone once told me that is how it usually works. That it is more important for children to be better behaved outside of the house than inside.  Well… that is simply nonsense!

Kids should be respectful both in and outside of the house.  There is never a reason why they should be any other way.  Psychologists say that during adolescents you should let children explore their feelings.  That they need to be respected and allowed to act the way they do. And, that it is a difficult time for them while they are trying to find their place in world; which is also when they seem to be the rudest, or so I thought.  Since I respect professional’s expertise and wish to believe that they know what they are talking about, I figured that once adolescence ended that the attitude would change and my children would blossom into respectful individuals.  Not only am I still waiting but I have learned that it is way after their teens until maturity takes hold. Granted this is a generalization, and I am only speaking from my own personal experiences and observations. But for those of you who are experiencing a similar scenario, just an FYI… it is much longer than you thought!

I recently witnessed a few incidents that not only enraged me but thoroughly embarrassed me.  I saw how rude and disrespectful my son was when speaking to people, especially to those he felt superior to. I don’t think he is any different than anyone else his age.  Most of the millennials I meet seem to have an “entitlement” complex.  I am not sure why but they do.  It is an attitude of dispensation that leads them to believe they are a cut above the rest.  I truly respect those who have good self esteem and self worth.  It is an admirable quality. But, what I do not understand and I am constantly perplexed by, is why anyone would need to disparage another human being to make them self feel superior?

I believe that good comes from good.  When you are kind to others, they are kind to you.  When you are respectful to others, they are respectful right back.  I raised my boys with this motto.  With age comes wisdom and from everything I see, they have many more years to go.  So for the time being, I will just wait on the sidelines for them to get it.  My only wish is for both their sakes that it is sooner rather than later. I know my children to be kind, loving, and respectful individuals.  And I cannot wait for their full potential to come to fruition once they mature.  And when that happens, they will become the great adults I know them to be and share their accomplishments and contributions with the world.

 

 

Advertisements

Life Lesson #125… Choose your priorities wisely

startup-593332_640

Life Lesson #125 – Choose your priorities wisely.

The Merriam-Webster Dictionary definition of Priorities is: The things that someone cares about and thinks more important.

This is a BIG one, at least for me!

When we are born our priorities are simple. Sleep, eat, and drink.  It is pure survival. As we grow, our parents or guardians set them for us. However, there are some adults who believe that you are never too young to learn how to prioritize on your own and they allow their children to do it all by themselves.  It is believed to build character and encourage free thinking.  I hate to admit it, but I did this with my kids.  In hindsight I think it was because it was a 180 from how my parents raised me.  And I honestly believed that I was doing the right thing.  I’m still trying to figure out if I did?

Regardless of which philosophy you adhere to, priorities are decisions made consciously and deliberately.  In our tweens and teens, this is usually self-fulfilling.  In our twenties and early thirties as we mature and our responsibilities increase, we are more likely to set them accordingly. As we age, we continue to reassess, as our life and focus change.

There is no right or wrong way, it is very personal.  For me as a Mom my priorities never waiver and are ruled by my maternal instinct. I always follow the same list: 1. Kids.  2. Animals. 3. Home. 4. Self.  Once my kids have families of their own, I am sure my list will be a little different, though they will always remain at the top of it!

Now that my sons’ are in their early twenties they are at the point of living the consequences of their priorities, which for me at times is hard to watch. In fact, I find this to be one of the most difficult parts of parenting.  Throughout their childhood, I always emphasized the importance of their decisions.  Reminding them, as I still do, about how the choices they make affect others and that they should always take that into account.

Day after day we prioritize.  We make lists.  We weigh and balance. But most importantly we need to remind ourselves to be mindful of our decisions and how that can and usually will influence the final outcome.  Remember to choose wisely.

 

Life Lesson #124… Create a world that you can be proud to leave behind!

leonard-nimoy-393861_640

Life Lesson #124 – Create a world that you can be proud to leave behind.

I can’t believe that it has been fifty years since Star Trek began.  I remember watching it as a little girl with my father.  Every week we would sit together in front of the “HeathKit” TV he made. At the scary parts, he’d tell me to close my eyes and then let me know when it was safe to open them again. Fond memories I will always cherish of what is now considered to be a “cult classic” with themes that are still relevant today.

You don’t have to be a “Trekkie” to read on.

Continue reading “Life Lesson #124… Create a world that you can be proud to leave behind!”

Life Lesson #123… Be Accepting!

girl-463462_640

 

 

Life Lesson #123 – Be Accepting!

I don’t know about you, but when I was a child I was told to never accept anything from anyone.  Maybe it was a generational thing passed down from my grandparents to my parents?  Maybe they believed that if you take “gifts” from others it was a sign of weakness or charity?  Honestly, I never asked.  I just did what I was told. In fact, to this day I still can’t accept a complement!

What I have learned and continue to learn every day is that there are many people in this world who are kind, giving, and loving individuals that truly want the best for others. I am both proud of myself for realizing this phenomenon, yet embarrassed that it took me this long to figure out.  I thought by not accepting what was offered, I was being benevolent.  I supposed that the act of giving was simply just that, an act.   Turns out, I was wrong. It is the exact opposite.  Just a few weeks ago, yes that is what I said; a few weeks ago I finally understood!

Someone who I love, she knows who she is, bought me a present which I could not accept.  I told her that I appreciated the thought but it was totally unnecessary and that she should take it back to the store.  I really believed in my heart that she understood my way of thinking.  Wrong again! Continue reading “Life Lesson #123… Be Accepting!”

Welcome to my blog…

Hello and welcome to my first blog.   Last month I went to the 2016 Blogpaws Conference in Phoenix, Arizona and became inspired to blog.  I was one of the few attendees that weren’t a blogger. I focused on all of the “beginner’s” blogging workshops which inspired and challenged me to pursue this.  

What I find funny and totally me, is that I am doing this backwards.  Usually you go from blogger to author.  Not me! I am going from author to blogger.  My primary job for the past 22 years has been a stay-at-home Mom.  I also worked part-time as a medical transcriptionist (10 years) and massage therapist (one and off for 18 years).  I am proud of all these jobs and the knowledge I gained from them.  However, I knew in my heart that I had more to give and searched until I found it.

It wasn’t until I was 50 (when my kids were young adults) that I had that “Ah ha” moment. I combined all my loves (writing, kids, and animals) and discovered “my life’s purpose”.  As a “social introvert”, a real thing by the way, I sit at home in front of a computer (with my animals surrounding me) and write.  I draw from my experiences.  I take what I learn and tell stories. I am a huge believer in life lessons and have raised my sons’ on them. Some examples are: “Give from your heart.”; “Be kind and respectful.”; “It’s not where you start but where you finish.”, and the list goes on and on. 

As an author of the “Rescue Me” children’s picture book series, I compiled the experiences that both my animals and I have gone through and wrote about them.  The first book of the series “The Upstairs Cat” is the true story of my son’s cat Amazon and how she dealt with his absence after leaving for college.  It is about change and facing fears of the unknown, an experience humans (and animals) go through daily.  I was amazed by her tenacity and courage.  I needed to tell her story and teach children (and everyone who reads the book) the importance of being brave through challenging times.  Every story in the series does that.  They are meant to teach lessons of how to triumph over obstacles, raise awareness to situations that we (animals and humans) face sometime in our lives and help erase the stigma attached to them.  No one chooses to be alone.  No one asks to be abandoned (emotionally or physically).  No one expects to be homeless. These are just a few examples of the themes that are addressed in the series.

What I have learned and wish to share is the need to be accepting of others by putting ourselves in their place.  What better outlet is there than through the pages of a picture book?  It is imperative for our children to understand what it feels like to be alone, lost or in fear and know that it doesn’t define them. All the “Rescue Me” stories help them discover that they have the power within (just like all the characters in all the stories) to rise above and help others in the process.  There is a desperate need in our society to open a dialogue which cultivates strength and unity.  Every book will show them that they have a voice and the ability to be courageous and compassionate no matter what life brings to the table. Every child deserves to learn that lesson. Every book in the series delivers that message.

This blog will be a potpourri of “life lessons”.  Like my books, I will write about what I know and continually learn.  This is my niche and I hope that it will be well received. 

I would love to hear from you about your own experiences. I welcome comments and your points of view.  Please contact me about things you are going through and what you would like to share with the world.  I am sure if it is important to you, it is important to others.  For more information click on the About me tab or go to my website (www.anopendoor.us)  to find out more about my books, nonprofit publishing company and the charities I support.

Thanks for coming to my blog and I hope you find it enlightening!

Jaimi Ilama