Something I saw on CBS Sunday Morning last weekend made me stop and think about parenthood — and gratitude. It was a commentary about how we don’t thank our parents, or show our gratitude often enough, to those who have given us so much. This being New Years season, I guess I’m still reflecting on times gone by. My own parents (above), now long gone, but never far from my mind and always in my heart, gave me a worldly perspective. They taught me to do unto others as I’d have them do unto me. Among so much else, of course.
In my own childhood, in our deep southern society, saying thank you to others was constantly impressed upon us. I mean constantly! But our parents never seemed to expect it for themselves. They were always there with their unconditional support.
I see families all around me now – including my own, Lord knows – where parents give selflessly to their children, making sure of their well-being and growth and happiness. They do so without thanks, and without expectation of thanks. And that’s fine, and it must be natural, but it doesn’t mean it has to be that way.
I want to go on record here and now stating that we could all probably do a better job, as we head in to this bright New Year, remembering to thank our parents. What an easy resolution to accomplish. Model that for your children, and see what comes back to you.
And if for you, like me, it’s too late, surely there’s someone you can thank in their place and in their honor. Someone who gave you a leg up, or kept an eye on you, or set you on the right track when you needed direction. You won’t regret it, and you may never know what it means to the recipient to know what they meant to you. Go ahead. Say thank you!
Happy New Year!