There have been many answers in response to what really brings happiness to the heart of a parent. This is not one of the many questions that require an answer without deep reflection. However, it is important to first understand why this is even necessary to consider in the first place.
The Parenting Crisis
Every child carries the signature of his or her parent. And though a parent may neglect in utter dismay their responsibility of love, protection, understanding and provision among other responsibilities they are meant to bear, history and nature consents to their ever wondering heart for their children.
It beats a level of understanding, but I have come to discover that a parents’ failure as a father or mother is not necessarily because they intend it so.
They do not desire to be an unloving father or an uncaring mother. The problem is, many times they are stuck in the world of their thoughts finding ways to be a better parent. But the more they try, the more difficult it seems.
No one will bluntly claim that raising a child is the easiest responsibility in the world. As a matter of fact, it is the sole foundation on which any society or nation is built.
When parents raise their voice and sometimes their hand against their child or children, it isn’t because their child is ‘the problem.’ The hidden and unsaid truth is, they are having a struggle within and that is what eats their strength, courage and understanding.
Parenting is not something anyone can learn perfectly from any formal school setting. It is an art but even more, it is a calling.
The very least any child can do is understand that for every action a parent takes, it is a fruit of their inner struggle to be a better parent.
Two Wrongs; One War
An eye for an eye will make the world go blind.
Many parents believe they are training their children in the best way. On the other hand, many children (teens, and youths inclusive) believe their parents aren’t using the best methods in raising them.
This has resulted in many broken homes, parents not in good speaking terms with their children and vice versa.
The more painful part that burdens me is when this misunderstanding between parents and their children results in a child seeking solace in the streets and in all the wrong places one can ever think of.
I will not take a stand on any side because only a compromise will reveal the truth. I quite agree parents may not always be right but I also believe they have not lost their heart.
Neither parents nor children are completely right on their stand about child upbringing, but on both ends there is a disposition that if well nurtured can foster oneness.
In many homes, I have noted that many children barely lay their heads beneath the roof of their parents apartment while their hearts are far away.
Time and again, I have shared that ‘a home is not where you place your head but where you place your heart.’ The support every child seeks from a parent is as equal or even more the support every parent seeks from their child though they fail to admit it.
More accolades and accomplishments will not bring greater joy or happiness to your parents if they are having the uncertainty of where your heart lays. You surpassing milestones will no doubt put a smile on their faces but a deeper void will be engraved in their heart.
A family isn’t a one way delivery system. It is two ways; from parent to child and from child to parent.
Many parents may have missed their turns and made the wrong choices. But you can save the situation by not reacting to the pain you feel being continually misunderstood, not listened too and worse, not cared for and loved.
By not reacting, I am not saying you do not have the right to be displeased, angry or grieved. What I mean is, let your pain inspire you to make the needed change.
Be an example of the very virtues your desire others to portray.
You Are The Key
Every soldier who has killed many in war fronts still have the heart to love, how much more parents who appear to have uncanny behaviour towards you?
You are the key to restoring a faulty or broken home.
You are the key to breaking the chain of family unrest.
You are the key to ensuring no child finds solace in the streets.
You are the key to the society we have always yearned and prayed for.
If you are in a family that doesn’t have the resemblance of a family, this is what I want you to do; be a family to others (your siblings, your children, your parents), whichever category best applies to you.
You are not doing them the favour, you are doing yourself the favour because forgiveness and love are fruits of a heart that will withstand stormy seas, survive dark nights and soar beyond limitation.
Our actions are what makes the little difference that when piled up makes a great difference.
Be an agent of change and positive influence today. Shine your light through every darkness and ensure your dying breath (whenever that may be) will be filled with pleasant memories and gladness of heart.