My girls mentioned several times..okay…nearly every time I talked to them, that they were watching Parenthood – all 4 seasons – one right after the other the way we like to watch a good show. I decided to try it out with Amazon Prime and I love it too. I don’t know whether it is Opie’s influence..but it is an amazing series. One of the episodes I watched today before getting out of bed hit me very hard – a conversation between mother and daughter – after mother, Sarah had given daughter, Amber, advice about performing her songs on open mike night at a small club.
I have always digested words of wisdom because I have not particularly liked myself in the past. So Oprah and Dr Phil were my mentors. When I heard the Dr Phil-ism that You teach people how to treat you…I took it to heart and did a deep dark examination and changed some things. If you are a people pleaser – everyone else knows it too and you will be inundated with ways to please people. If you have a short fuse and explosive issues, you will inspire anger and tension and may be left alone even if that is not what you really want. If you refuse to let people get close to you, then people will stay away. If you are a fixer, people will come to you to be fixed. If you are a door mat and let people walk all over you, you will be crushed. Every scenario has many results.
While trying to give Amber some words of encouragement, Sarah used her own experiences and what she projected that Amber needed to hear – which had the direct opposite result and Amber backed away from something she really wanted to do. Grandma reminded Sarah that parents can be there but can’t protect their children and it is the hardest thing about being a parent. In turn, Sarah had the following (not verbatim) conversation with Amber:
When we have kids it is all very confusing because we see so much of ourselves in them..your sense of humor, your smile, the way you walk that the parent thinks of the child as themselves …They are not you and they shouldn’t have to carry your baggage and fears about life that you carry…… Kids have their own.
Parents always want to protect their children, knowing it is not possible will probably not halt our advice but little bites will be easier for them to digest. I’m going to try harder.
Until next time….