27 June 2007

What My Dad Taught Me





I was inspired to blog about my Dad today.

I have really just begun to get to know my Dad. As a human being, a person who has been living his adventure for the past 73 years. My Dad is extremely intelligent, and has a truly unique perspective on life. He is very proud of my advocacy work in our schools. Especially the work I have done with our Spanish speaking families. I told him how lame I felt because I did not learn Spanish as he encouraged me to do when I was growing up. He told me all I needed was a record, I could pick it up pretty fast. Did I ever do it? Nooooooo.
My Dad graduated from high school in his early 40s. He is proud of this fact, and I am proud of him. My Dad taught me that anything I wanted to learn about, or whatever made me excited or inspired me, I always had the choice to learn more about it, if I wished.
My Dad plays the guitar, self taught. My Dad studied photography, geology, has travelled extensively and learned about many different cultures. He loves art and science and it shows. He can thrill my kids with "little known random knowledge" that only Grampa Joe could make cool and interesting.
The latest "random knowledge" he shared with his two youngest grandkids was how a shrunken head is REALLY made.
My Dad had his share of not so good times. Even at 73, he carries
parental guilt. He tells me no matter how old you are, you will still
wish your kids could do better. That was the dream of his family when they came here from Mexico so many years ago. To make a better life for the next generation.
So I am "shucking" all my parent guilt off for the moment and I know that I am doing BETTER for my children and their children. With
the burden of "parental guilt" it changes your perspective so much,
being such an emotional drain. Parent Power, now that is what we
can take for an emotional booster. My Mom thinks I am nuts to know
so much about the legal ends of school. That I waste my time with
meetings when I should be at home. Things have changed since we
went to school Mom - I try and tell her. She listens but the "parental
guilt" voice sometimes is strong in her (as it is in my Dad)
I take the Parent Power from my parents @ 40 and make a better life and future for my kids. And they are lucky and I am lucky to have my Mom and Dad in my life.

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