Nearing my dirty 30 has led me to think a lot about growing up: getting married, buying a house, having a kid… woah. To be very honest, I still feel like a kid. Actually, I don’t remember worrying this much as a kid — about money, about relationships, about life.
I know I want kids someday and here are just a few basic things I want to remember to tell my baby one day. I hope he or she (or they) chooses to hear me out, but at least I can say I tried.
1. Love hard but love carefully
I want my child to know that love is a beautiful thing…and it can be the most painful thing too. When I talk about love, I don’t just mean the romantic kind. Love for a friend, for a relative, for a significant other, for a pet. Love is a very powerful thing that can lead people to their best and worst- all at the same time. I want my baby to love hard, but be very careful about letting love take over and losing total control. Let’s be clear: real love will make all of us lose at least some control. That’s what makes it worth it.
2. Money cannot buy you everything, but having enough of it sure does help
Mo’ money, mo’ problems — PSYCH! I’m not wealthy so there are very slight chances my children will grow up wealthy. We won’t be poor — I hope — but I need my kids to learn the value of money and that — most of the time — saving money for a future occasion is better than splurging it for temporary satisfaction. Many problems can be solved much easier when money is available. Give yourself that option to make life’s lows a little more manageable.
3. Don’t be afraid to cuss, just do it wisely
Understand that cussing can be offensive to some and meaningless to others. Cuss because you are expressing extreme emotion, not because you have no better language to use. Use it only on occasion and don’t feel guilty about it. Be respectful when children and elders are around. Otherwise, let loose!
4. Be focused on being the best you
At the end of every day, you will be responsible for yourself and only you (until you have kids of your own to groom). Focus on what you can control and do the best you can in everything. I would rather you shoot for the moon and land amongst the stars than for you to play it safe. When you focus on being the best you, you will attract others who are doing the same. Don’t be afraid to be you; just focus on being true.
5. Always make gratitude your attitude
No matter how tough things may get, try your very best to be reminded of the things you do have and what/who you can be grateful for. Life will be full of ups and downs and sometimes the downs can be lower than imaginable. Don’t give up. Let the downs help you recognize the beauty of the ups.
I don’t know if I will be blessed with children one day, but I am a proud “gugu” to a beautiful nephew. If my brother and sister-in-law allow me, these are some life lessons I would like to share with the precious baby boy when the time is right. I do truly believe that children are our future (duh) and hope they are able to live life to its fullest considering what the world is like now. I wish these things were taught to me at an early age, and that is not to diss my parents, rather the culture I grew up in that did not allow us to talk about anything outside of completing homework and getting good grades.
I vow to have honest and sensitive conversations with my child. I want my child to feel comfortable coming to me for anything and everything. We won’t be best friends, but we will have a bond so strong that my child will never be afraid of life and what it has to bring.