A couple of days ago I thought about the way I am raising my kids and what the main mistakes actually are, that I might one day regret.
When my Dad died some years ago I had a hard time to find out, what I have learned from him, and how he influenced me as a person. He, as I guess most Dads are doing, did not really sit down, and made a certain plan on the way he impacted our lives and our behaviours. He did it on the fly and it kind of worked out. Maybe I am romanticising this idea anyway, because in my mind I can see these Dad-kid moments like in some movies, where the wise old Daddy has a big quote for every life situation. Real life is different, and now being a Dad on my own I am more in reaction mode, than sitting on the porch, waiting for the kid to show up, jumping on my lap and listening to my wise words.
Anyhow, I still think that it would be a good idea to write things down a little bit more often. Especially when it comes to the wish of how I want my kids to be as person. I have certain values that I fight for, and that are absolutely important to me, and my surroundings. The people I care for should know my values and respect them, that's all I can ask for. My kids should know them for sure. Whether they live according to these values or not is not in my power, but I can raise them to have a basic setup and to decide to go a certain way. So I call this intentional care-taking. I want to be aware of the values and behaviour I demonstrate to the little ones. "Monkey sees, monkey does", and babies pretty much act exactly like that. We are their role models, and they just do what they have seen.
All that said, I made a plan. It is not easy to be aware of the influence you have on others, especially as the day is long, there are so many things and little words that have an effect, but are not intentional at all. So for the next couple of weeks, I will write down a short letter each day, apologising for the main mistake I made on that day. I will focus on things that are not in balance with my personal values or the way I want myself to behave. I will write these virtual letters to my kids, so that in a couple of weeks I can read them again and maybe get a better idea on my influence and what I need to improve to become that wise sage. I invite you to join in this challenge and in a few weeks we can analyse what I've found out.
Let's go and get better