Sometimes, life throws you a curveball that causes you to reflect, especially if you are a parent. God forbid, if something were to happen to you, what would you want your kids to know?
For my family, when Dan, my husband, was diagnosed with a brain tumor five years ago, the idea that he or even I might not be around to watch our kids grow up made us think hard about this. Even though Dan was the one with a brain tumor, I could be hit by a bus tomorrow — one never knows what is around that next corner for any of us.
Dan and I decided to each make a journal or book to give our kids someday. This book had all kinds of advice we wanted them to know and would tell them ourselves over the years. Some was serious, and some not so serious, but still a lesson we would want our sons to know.
Here are just a few of the items I wrote in my journal to Jack, Drew, and Aiden:
No. 26 — On your first date, always bring a woman flowers. Women love this and it shows you put thought and effort into your plans before you even showed up!
No. 8 — Target v. Walmart, Target wins!
No. 27 — Someday, you may want to get a tattoo. Since this is permanent and will always be with you, make sure you really think about what design you might want and where to place it so that, depending on what you do for a living, you can hide it if necessary. Plus, wait until you are at least 18!
No. 43 — Never ask a woman her age—or her weight!
No. 15 — Always open the door for a woman, no matter how young or old she is. This can be a door to a store or a car door — it is the gentlemanly thing to do!
No. 39 — Never go to bed angry!
No. 12 — Don’t leave your dirty dishes in the sink for someone else to clean up.
What a legacy to leave our children! I plan to be there for the long hall, until I am old and grey. Still the journal I penned five years ago is a just in case and is also a way to laugh and share as our boys become men!