Tuesday, September 08, 2009

I hold these truths to be self-evident

I have decided maybe it's time I write my own personal Declaration of Experience...

I have learned a great deal about me, my life and me living my life in my first 41 years. I know there is much more to be learned. And I look forward to those life lessons.

But right now I have decided that I do know a few things about myself and about life. You are so lucky as to have me share them with you...

I am fiercely independent. In thought and action.

This also translates into the fact that I detest being micromanaged by ANYONE. Tell me what you need, how you envision it done and when you need it. THEN BACK OFF.
If I ask your opinion on something, it is usually as a courtesy. So unless you make an exceptional argument for your cause, I'm gonna do it my way anyway.

I am loyal to a fault. To friends and family
If you are important to me, I got your back! Sometimes to my own detriment.

I hate snakes. Dead. Live. Plastic. Real. ALL.OF.THEM.

I am not an "Animal Person." Before you get all worked up, I do make exceptions for exceptional animals. Have been very attached to quite a few over the years. Just not the Animal Kingdom as a whole.

I believe the absolute VERY best advice I've had the privilege to learn first hand is to surround yourself with quality people. Find people with strong work ethics, high moral standards, intelligence, wit, common sense, and creativity. Seek these people out. Befriend them. They will almost always pull you up and at times even insulate you from the mistakes you would otherwise make.

Another life lesson learned is to seek out people different from you. Whether it be religion, politics, nationality, social caste, education level - whatever you perceive to separate you from them. Draw these folks in and learn about them. Learn from them. Teach them about you. I have always found our similarities are greater than our differences. And at the same time, I expanded my own life's point of reference.

I have learned that, on average, I will come to regret about 50% of the words that come out of my mouth. This realization does not stop me from saying stupid or hurtful things. Thus far I have not figured out how to turn my Insensitive Speaker off, I am just aware that it happens. And wanted you to know that I know.

If you need prescription medication to live a normal life, TAKE IT! If your child needs them - GIVE THEM TO YOUR CHILD. I know many people do not agree with this. Fine. You live your life. My family and I will live ours. I tried alternative methods. I know what works in my house. Doesn't matter what you call the problem. Does not matter how many labels they assign to your 'issues'. Really. It does NOT matter. If there is pharmacology that helps you (or your child) level out and actually enjoy each other and life, then by all means, USE it.

Seek out experts. Do your homework. Ask questions. Be prepared. READ! Plan ahead. And sometimes it really is better to ask forgiveness than permission.

Your children grow so much faster than you could ever imagine. At least mine have. My son, at five, still asks me to pick him up. And I almost always do. Because I never know when it will be the last time he asks me to do so. He asks me to walk him to the end of the driveway to wait for the bus. I always do. Soon he will be too embarrassed to even hug me.
Enjoy every second. They go by way too fast.

Tell people you love them. Tell them specifically the impact they have had on your life. You need to say it and they need to hear it. This is one of the most life-sustaining habits I have. And I should do it more often.

So that's not all I have learned. Thankfully. But it's a start. And some of the most important lessons I can share with anyone bold enough to read this.

What have you learned?


tracy c said...

That was Great Tracey! So glad to have inspired you. Think maybe I'll write my "what I have learned"!


Anonymous said...

TCole, such a beautiful post! Love you sista!


Wien. said...

Ditto the above posts, very beautiful words. Thanks.

Not Fainthearted said...

That's quite a lot you have learned. The rest might be details.

I second and third the part about the kids growing up too fast. DS1 went off to college this fall and I think it was just a couple of months ago he couldn't lay down for a nap without being held on my lap or clutching my arm as I lay next to him on the bed. All the wishing in the world won't make it possible to hold your great hulking 18-year-old on your lap again! Hug and hold 'em while you can.