Things My Son Has Taught Me

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One of the best parts of parenthood is learning from our children. Even though they are young and lack a lot of life experience, we can learn so much from them! Here are some of the best things my son has taught me over the last 15 years. 

Try new things, and be brave.

My son has tried a great variety of things in his short time earth-side. He has explored gymnastics, football, baseball, swimming, bicycles, art, cooking and all sorts of other adventures. Next up is inline hockey! I love his gusto to explore! He has shown bravery with each new class or lesson, going in with a positive attitude. Maybe one day I’ll get up the nerve to take the tap dancing class I’ve wanted to since I was four years old. 

It’s OK to change your mind about stuff. 

Sometimes, I can be set in my ways, even about things that I profess to like or ways I swear that I am. I use the words “never” and “always” when speaking about myself. My son has shown me that there are seasons in life for things and that it’s OK if we change our minds, move on, and do something else. I love that he gives himself permission to outgrow things and grow into others.

Say hello to others and be friendly. 

My child was born with a smile on his face. Even as a toddler, he was a cheerful and smiley kid and strangers were drawn to him. Everywhere we went, my son found a person to talk to. It didn’t matter if it was an adult or a child, he would make a new friend. In my life, I’ve been a sort of shy, closed person. Wow! I was unprepared for this charming child! When he chatted with strangers, I found myself smiling and chatting, too. After a few years, I realized that I kept this friendly nature even when I was out of the house without my son. Now, I feel proud to offer an open smile and a “hello” to people around me. It makes the world a little more bearable. 

Life is made for having fun. 

Working has never been high on my kiddo’s list of to-dos. Instead, he wants to play and have fun. Even as a maturing teenager, he’s always ready to have a good time. His carefree attitude has taught me that life isn’t all responsibilities and chores, but we are here to have fun and make connections with one another. 

Relax and go with the flow. 

The Universe knew that this anxious, over-planning mama would need a go-with-the-flow sort of kid. I can learn a lot from my son’s chill attitude! Over the years, he has helped me let go of some of the plans and enjoy life.

Be kind and help others. 

My rough and tough football-loving boy has the most tender and sweet heart. He sets an example for me regarding how to actually be there for people who are hurting. Any time I am crying or upset, he’s the first to ask what is wrong and offer me a hug. He is quick to share encouraging words and is always willing to lend a helping hand to those around him. I am constantly impressed with his ability to show vulnerability when others are hurting. 

Above all, be yourself. 

Out of all the compliments I give my son, this one is a favorite: He is 100% himself. I think that is a rare gift in a world full of Instagram influencers and online fakes. My Matthew knows who he is and has the confidence and bravery to show that to the world. He is a young man who deeply knows his value as a human, and infects others with this gift. He is a person that you can be yourself around. I strive to be myself in this world, and also be open and accepting, allowing others to be their true selves around me. 

Thank you, son, for being my teacher.

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