Monday, December 15, 2014

Who You Come From

When you are a child, you have no concept of the life that will unfold before you. All you can see is what is front of you. Its almost like looking at a beautiful picture and only seeing the large, sweeping colors and shapes of that picture. You really don't appreciate the nuances and delicate aspects of that picture until you take the time to investigate and uncover the effort behind the picture. Life is very much like that. As you grow older you begin to explore your life on a deeper more reflective level. We begin to reflect greatly on our daily existence and the decisions that lead to that existence. So much of what we become in life is dictated by the decisions we make. Almost all of those decisions we make are underneath our own control, however, there is one glaring decision that we have no control over...the people we come from.

The longer I live the more thankful I am that I have been blessed to come from my parents. No one on this planet gets to choose who their parents will be. Its amazingly strange that so much of who we become is predicated upon who we come from. I am obviously grateful that my parents decided to have me, but more grateful that they decided to be very intelligent in regards to how they set up my life.  My mother and my father were smart with their money, valued education for themselves and my brother and I. They expected us to act appropriately and be kind and caring to others. Overall, they have loved me, encouraged me, counseled me, hugged me and challenged me. And then they did the best thing any parent could do...they let me go and become the person I wanted to be. They never smothered me. That let me fly away from the nest and never asked me to return for their sake or because they did so much for me growing up. They did their job with a tremendous amount of classiness and love and when it was time they set me free into the world.

However, I recognize that there are so many people who never got that. So many people who have become bitter, scarred and hurt by the people who raised them. It hurts me to see people raised by other people who had no plan or real understanding of the impact of raising children. So as it goes...those parents have children and pass on their insecurities, anger, lack of proper decision making skills, poor financial practices and so on and so forth to their children. And then that cycle repeats itself.

My goal in writing this blog and many of my other blog entries is for someone to see this and know that I care about you. I know you've been treated badly and that your actions many times follow what you've seen early in your life. I also want you to know that you don't have to be defined by who raised you. It might have been a large part of who you are now, but it does not have to be a large part of who you will become. I know the road is an uphill one and it seems insurmountable sometimes, but you can begin to make better decisions that will positively impact your life for years to come.

My daughter is one such example of that. My Rosie is adopted. Her birth mother made one of the most heart wrenching decisions any mother can make in life. She created an adoption plan for her child. An in that plan she was given the opportunity...the choice...to choose the parents she wanted to raise her daughter because she knew she could not do it based on the life she was living. There was nothing more powerful than my wife and I sitting in front of Rosie's birth mother when she was eight months pregnant with Rosie. She looked my wife and I directly in the eyes and said "this is your child...you are going to do a great job...this is your child." This was a 21 year old woman making the choice to give her flesh and blood a better life. The most gratifying aspect of that decision is that we all helped break the cycle. Rosie is going to be the first person in her biological family's life who is going to get the shot at life that she was meant to have.

What kind of shot at life do you want to have? Do you want a life that is shallow and superficial? Is is like a beautiful painting that is only admired for its surface level quality? Or do you want a life that is rich with wisdom, care, respect, encouragement, love and appreciation. That's a picture of your life that is deeply symbolic of good decision making and more careful thought of the outcomes for yourself and others. And while you can't choose who raises you, you can definitely choose to explore your life in a more meaningful way and make better decisions. Take a hold of your life and begin to fly.

Until next time...

Dr. D


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