“We learn every day,” so says that popular saying.
I know that is true in many aspects of our human endeavours. But being a relatively new parent, I have come to also realise that the statement is particularly true of parenting.
Parenting is a huge responsibility. But it is also full of opportunities to learn new things.
As parents we know that our children learn from us. But beyond that, any sincere parent would acknowledge that every now and then, he or she also learns from his or her children as well.
I have experienced it several times…
I have a three-year old and a five year old. Sometimes I set out to teach them some things and in the process I learn new things from them as well. Even I have enriched my vocabulary merely listening to them. And I believe I’m not alone here.
There have been times they asked me questions I didn’t have immediate answers for. But as I looked around for the most appropriate feedback to give to them, I got to learn new things in the process.
I also get to use my experience in guiding them. But I have since realised that experience is not enough; my experience is my experience, not theirs.
Just like many new parents, I would admit that I don’t know it all. So I am still learning… And it seems to me that every opportunity that gets created for me to teach my kids something is also an opportunity for me to learn something too – no matter how small.
Granted that when I am teaching them, I tend to do most of the talking most times. But it pays to listen to what they have to say as well. Listening is a key part of parenting. Every parent should develop the skill.
I would not say I have arrived in that respect. But I know I’m no longer where I used to be when the parenting journey got started.
Now I’m learning to be a little more open and more accommodating to their many ideas and perspectives. They don’t have their way most times (obviously, they shouldn’t). But I shouldn’t have my way all the time either.
They may not be aware yet that relating with them opens a new vista of knowledge for me. But I have come to realise that I am learning a lot from them.
So in only five years experience on the job, I am convinced that parenting is learning. That’s my perspective. What’s yours?
©Copyright 2018 | Victor Uyanwanne