10 Things I Want You to Know
When I reached out for some blog ideas to my friends on my Instagram, this idea popped up. The original idea was 50 things but I thought I’d keep it simple and create a list of 10 things I want my kids (plural! 2 weeks to go!) to go through life knowing. I thought it was such a sweet idea. It’s something I can share with them when they are old enough to understand and something they can look back on when things get tough or they need reassurance. Here goes!
1. You’re loved. Always. By your Mum and your Dad, and by God.
I will love you when you don’t sleep. When you throw food. When you throw tantrums. When you give me back-chat or attitude. When you don’t do your homework. When you fail the test. When you call me at 4am from Kings Cross stuck with no way of getting home to sleep off your hangover. I will love you through everything, and so will your Dad. And so will God. No matter what, we will always, always love you.
2. The world can be home to unfavorable people but the world is actually a beautiful place.
It’s up to each of us to make this place better. Don’t grow bitter at the state of affairs – whether it be political, environmental, theological, cultural. Connect with people, learn about people’s stories and enjoy your world. If you want to make it better, act.
3. Stand up for your beliefs but also stand up for those who are less fortunate than you.
You both get to live in a first world country. That is so privileged. Many many people have it worse off than you. Even in your own backyard. Always advocate for kindness, compassion and connectedness no matter your neighbour’s race, skin colour or beliefs. It costs nothing to be kind, but it costs everything to divide yourself from others. Don’t let your own ego dictate how you treat people, ever.
4. It’s okay to not be okay, and it is expected that you ask for help.
Gone are the days where you have to suffer in silence. You guys are lucky that the culture is shifting around all things mental and emotional health. A problem shared is a problem halved. I will always be here to either just listen or help solve. Asking for help takes bravery, courage and more often than not it is the necessary thing to do. The problem may be layered and take some time to untangle or sit with, but let me sit up with you and we can drink tea and nut it out, together.
5. Hard work is never wasted.
You don’t always reap the benefits of hard work straight away, or witness the fruits of something first go. Often, hard work and labour is like a big painting – it takes many hours, many breaks, much persistence and a lot of reworking and fiddling to see something come to life or come to fruition. Stick it out. The juice will be worth the squeeze if it’s something your passionate about or if it is something that is important to you and your own family one day. All good things will take grit, patience, consistency and strength.
6. Always be learning.
Learn about the world. Learn about others. Learn about things that interest you. Learn about your partner. Learn about your career. Always enter into things humbly, whether it be conversations, university classes, relationships and jobs. Having a teachable heart and a mind that is open will help you be a compassionate and intelligent member of society. Never think you know it all. The older I get, the more I feel like I am unlearning and relearning everything! It’s okay to not know or change your views based on new things you have learnt.
7. You are unique and that makes you, you.
Never lose your ‘you-ness’. You’ll be tempted to fit in, but there is not another you in this world, and it will be the most important role you play as you navigate through life. It keeps you steady, and even though relationships, jobs and addresses will change, staying true to yourself will be your most most valuable asset as you navigate through life and weather the changes that will inevitably come.
8. There will always be light and shade in life.
Life won’t be easy all the time, but it also shouldn’t be hard all the time. You’ll face lots of adversity – you’ll face death of family members most likely, job losses, maybe even hardships with relationships, but you’ll also have some seriously awesome fun in this life if you are open enough to notice it. Stop and appreciate the beauty and blessings in your life. If you don’t look for it you won’t always spot it.
9. Mums do normally know best.
You’ll hate this one, but mums (and dads) really do know best. We’ve all been at rock bottom. We’ve stood where you’ve stood. We’ve been where you are whether you believe it or not. Take our advice, or at least just listen to it. It’s totally okay to make your own choices regarding anything in life of course, but going into things with a parental perspective can be really handy. Trust me.
10. You both will always be your father’s and my greatest achievement.
No matter what you both do, who you marry, where you end up setting down your own roots, we are always going to be proud of you. You won’t always get it right. You’ll probably regret some choices you make at some stage or another across your entire life. You won’t always do things your dad and I will agree with. But you are so special to us and nothing you could ever do could change the way we feel about you. You are our flesh and blood, and have our whole hearts, always.