My entire life has been filled to the brim with being busy, productive and successful. It’s been ingrained in me since I was a tiny human. Do good, be good, and success will follow. Work hard. Under promise and over deliver. I am not one of those people who can just sit and wait and hope something falls into my lap. I’ve always been of the mindset that good things don’t come to those who wait, good things come to those who want something so badly that they can’t sit still.
I often get told “You’re always doing something!” as if being motivated and driven we’re things to be ashamed of. I am not afraid of failure, I am afraid of regret. I am afraid of life passing me by and not ever being given that chance to shine, not ever been given the chance to shake my wings out and fly.
My father gave me the best bit of advice I’ve ever received and it has become his legacy within me;
“Never be a liar, a cheater or a thief because then you’ll have nothing left to fall back on.”
At first it seems so silly, relying on lies, cheating and theft as a means to “fall back on”, but once you’re a liar, you can never be “an honest man” – or woman. Have you ever heard the term “Once a cheater, always a cheater.”? Same thing. And I’ve always lived my life this way. That quote sums up “where I come from” and it’s one of the reasons I am where I am.
I was blessed to have an amazing childhood with amazing parents who nurtured me, taught me hard lessons, and helped form my personality; and if you’ve ever met me, you know it’s a very strong one! I can remember being this way from the beginning. I’ve heard stories of the doctor warning my mother about the “strong willed child” I would become.
I am proud of me, and I am raising the same exact strong willed child right now – she’s my carbon copy, sprinkled with a little bit of her daddy’s stubbornness and drive. I will bring her into this world ready to take on anything that’s thrown her way.
I remember as a child, having conversations with my parents, having them read to me and sing with me. It gave me confidence, it gave me conversational skills, it taught me basics of being a part of society. Abbey and I love to sing together, her favorite bands include The Beatles and Queen (yeah, we’re that awesome). We love to read chapter books like The Never-Ending Story and Charlotte’s Web, and look forward to learning about the characters and story lines. And we talk. We share parts of our day, talk about things that are going on, places we want to go and things we’d like to try.
So many people ask me how she got so smart, and why she speaks so well, and I just tell them that I speak to her like an adult. She’s just a tiny one, right? She makes me so proud, and I know that one day her story of how she got to where she is then will include me talking and reading and singing with her.
How are you talking, reading and singing with your kids?