Parental Post-Mortem

My parents are alive and kicking (just in case you took the subject literally). However, they have gone back to Canada after a trip to Singapore and Asia. The interesting thing about parents is that they can put up with their children for years but when I mentioned the time period they were staying with me, friends said incredulously “a whole month?” And what a month it was – besides travelling and sightseeing with them, there were other lessons that I took away from their time back in my daily life.

The Parent Mirror

Parents, like children and many people who surround us, can be serious mirrors for us. Often the areas that bug us most about them are the areas we need to work on ourselves. It’s because we resonate with behaviours or attributes that are on our ‘gotta change this’ list. We can also draw this information from less familial sources – our reactions to crowds, or other drivers, or service people can give us reminders – but having living, breathing relatives we’ve shared our formative years with can really churn up past memories (remember, the subconscious mind can tune in easily to old songs on the mental radio) and highlight the aspects that need attention.

Get Out of the Pool

While parents are wonderful hypnotists (intentionally using their power for good but naturally taking some mis-steps) we needn’t wallow in the gene pool that’s not supporting us. Yes, they may have given us mixed messages, irrelevant beliefs, influenced strange perceptions of ourselves, but we have freewill and can continue to write our story with our own thoughts and feelings. You’ll never be just like your father or mother – no matter what others may have said or implied, and so that leaves you free to create the combination you wish.

Positive Parent Perspective

Having my folks near and ‘showing them off’ to others in my life has allowed me to recalibrate a little in terms of their weakness, strengths and personality pluses and idiosyncrasies. For those who have met them know they are ‘lovely’ people, but they are so much more. Often, as sons or daughters (spouses, partners etc work too here) we have a picture of our folks taken at age 6 (wow) or 16 (ugh) but forget to re-shoot later on. So our sepia-toned image doesn’t actually match the people who surround us now. Fortunately this time together allowed me to literally and figuratively take a new roll of pictures that better captured these quirky, wonderful, generous individuals I call mom and dad.

Aspire to the best

My parents have faults and have made some mistakes – thank goodness. Fortunately it is something that I have learned over the years – wouldn’t it be hard to live up to perceived perfection (even though, as humans, it is our mistakes that actually help us learn in a more accelerated fashion). So for the flubs and imperfections I am grateful. As always we can choose what we focus on, and I’ve discovered that the reflection I’m taking for the mirror is a more positive one. By taking a bit of time to rediscover (or just simply discover) who my parents are, it has allowed me to start to reconsider the ‘girl’ I am. And if I’m dipping into my parents gene pool, what wonderful, life-giving nutrients and resources are there! So many lessons they taught (and continue to teach) me, so many things to be thankful for. I’m lucky to have them in my life.

If you’re ever in Toronto and happen to run into a Thom and Catherine, just call them dad and mom, and you’ll be in good company.

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