Saturday, February 02, 2019

Children Arrive With an Owner's Manual

We often say, "Our children did not come with an owner's manual." Why not?
Or did they? Did we not see it before our eyes and make use of it? Our parents, grandparents, aunts & uncles, and siblings with children are "the owner's manual." Do we access them for advice often enough? Are they readily available?

In days of old when multi-generational families lived in close proximity, their experiences and wisdom were easily accessible.  Now that we are such a mobile society, and so rarely live in multi-generational households we need a different way to pass down information and wisdom.

Create a notebook to record the raising of our children. Write down what our children to and our reactions. Write down how we solved problems, how we cleaned up messes. Write down advice that others give you. Be sure to write down any memories from your own childhood that our own children's actions conjure. Those memories will let your adult children know that you survived and learned from the struggle. 

When we do not record our processes of raising our children, when we don't write down what our children do that delights us and drives us crazy, we do our children and grandchildren a disservice.

The "Owner's Manual", your notebook, can be paper or digitial. When your grandchildren arrive, give a copy to the parents so that they may have the wisdom and experiences of their elders and be better informed of what is coming.