October 06, 2009

The Sins of the Father Are Visited Upon the Son

(This was originally run here. Since I decided to update it I figured that I would run it again.)

To be honest I never paid any attention to that phrase. For that matter "to be honest' is kind of a funny one because it suggests that I might not be honest all of the time. And if you begin to question my honesty our relationship is doomed because we can't keep going on with suspicious minds.

As a parent you understand that everything you do will impact your child in some way or another. Especially when they are very young and in formative years, they watch and learn from everything you do. I am pretty conscious of this because it is very important to me to give something to my children, to help them be better in every way than I am.

But along with the good there is the bad, or less desirable traits that can be passed along. And now I see that my son appears to have a few. He has my temper, but it doesn't come out very often. He is such a sweet little boy, that it is somewhat shocking to see his anger. It is not unusual, he acts in an age appropriate fashion. Most of the time it appears when he is overtired, but I recognize the fire in his eyes. It is an old friend that I hope he does not become well acquainted with.

I also see that like me he doesn't let go of things very easily and I cannot help but wonder if this is genetic or if somehow I passed this along. If you hurt me, I remember. If you make me angry, I remember. If I embarrass myself, I remember. The shame, the pain and the anger are things that stick with me. I work all the time at letting the baggage go, there is no need for me to serve as their beast of burden. I am not always successful at letting go, but I am good at hiding the feelings from you and those who know me.

And now I see that my son is learning how to hold on to things and it hurts me. I know the ache and the pain that this can cause and I would spare him that. I am 35 and I know how to deal with it, he is four. He has a look in his eyes that breaks my heart like nothing else has.

So we are going to work on this. I am going to try and help him learn how to push away the nonsense so that he lives life unencumbered by the small things that prick us. I don't want to see that sadness in his eyes.

Don't get me wrong, he is a very happy little boy. His school is across the street from my office, so I see him during the day. Sometimes I watch him when his class is on the yard. He is a ball of motion running around, riding bikes, going down the slide and just one of the children. I pick him up and I see him playing with other children, so I feel very comfortable that he is a well adjusted child. I just can't help but try to help him.

The love for a child is limitless.

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