Lessons I Learned From My Parents
But Now It's To Late
I recently read a book entitled, “Bad Things My Grandpa Taught Me”. While the book was about the things grandfathers do to get their grandchildren in trouble it also reminded me of some lines of wisdom my parents imparted to me.
Here's your quarter allowance, don't spend it all in one place. Yes at one time in my life I received a quarter for an allowance, but back then a quarter went a long way. You could buy a bottle of soda, then return the bottle and get two cents back. I could buy twenty five pieces of penny candy or a Hershey bar. I could almost get one gallon of gas or a comic book.
The lesson I should have learned. Save your money you might need it later.
Do it right the first time and you won't have to do it a second time. I learned this truth from my father who made me do it myself until I got it right. I also wanted him to know I was trying to do it right the first time but sometimes it just didn't work out that way.
The lesson I should have learned. Be more attentive to what you're doing and you get it done right the first time.
Shut the door, do you live in a barn? I think as children we all must have heard this at least once. You rush in the house to get a drink or something and leave the door open behind you. Sometimes I would respond to my mother's words by saying, “You always tell me not to slam the door,”. My mother would just give me a look. I would then march back and shut the door.
Which reminds me. I used to hate the look from both my mother and father. You know the stare which could either mean you were in big trouble or you needed to listen to what you were being told.
The lesson I learned. I liked to see my mom smile more then scowl.
Sure you can have all the candy you want. Sounds like advice to good to be true. Well it is, because to get the full effect of the words you need to hear the sarcastic tone in which the words were delivered. My mom would use these words when she was trying to tell me I needed eat healthier. Some of the later versions of these words were, “Sure you can smoke if you want,” and “Sure I'll let you eat the whole cake,”
The lesson I learned. Healthy eating when your younger keeps you in better shape as you age.
Taking a half hour shower doesn't get you any cleaner then a five minute one. When I was little we only had a bathtub, which you would sit in for as long as you want. When we finally had a place with a shower I inadvertently stand under the water for a long time. Finally my mom would knock on the door and tell me my time time was up, now get out of the shower.
The lesson I learned. My mom was right. A long shower does only one thing, wastes a lot of gallons of water.
The last bit of advice I would like to impart to you is one of my parents favorite sayings and one which I have used more than once on my children. Here it is. I walked ten miles to school everyday, across the train bridge, uphill, both ways. My mom lived in West Virginia so she had to walk across a train trestle in order to get to school. I don't really know how far the school was from where my mother loved but the lesson was obvious. The version I've used of this story is the one which goes, “I walked ten miles to school everyday, on a snow covered road, uphill both ways.”
The lesson I learned Stop complaining when I ask you to some work. I had it a lot harder then you ever will.
These are a few of the lessons I learned. I hope to write some more later.
© 2012 Timothy Whitt