For My Children - Words of Wisdom
Dear Cody and Franki,
I am writing a good-old fashion letter as part of an assignment for one of my college literature classes. However, as the words spill out of my head and across my keyboard, I suddenly realize that I can use this moment to teach you about some very important life lessons.
Let me start with a full disclosure: Your father is a child in a man’s body who made mistakes in his past, however, I am a better person today because of them.
I didn’t have an easy life, but I didn’t make it any easier for myself either. I suppose that this letter was originally intended to warn you away from the likes of people such as myself. I was a careless and arrogant curmudgeon with chip on his shoulder to boot. This is a result of my father dying unexpectedly when I was fourteen years old. I was robbed of my childhood and abandoned by my family shortly thereafter. When I was seventeen years old, I was kicked out of the house by your grandmother. In her defense, I would have kicked myself out too. Don’t feel too bad for me though - at least she sent me packing with my portion of the inheritance. (NOTE: Do not give a large sum of unrestricted money to an unsupervised teenager because it will surely be squandered.)
Anyways, the point of this letter is not to rekindle the suppressed memories of my past, but rather serve as a guideline on how to live a happy and decent life. If you are able to follow a fraction of the advice that I am about dispense, you will be eons ahead of where I was at your age.
Do not be afraid to turn the other cheek, no matter how hard the other person hits you. If you can learn to channel your anger, instead of bottling it up, you’ll punch fewer holes in the wall and spend less time in the back of a police cruiser than me.
Stand up to bullies - Respect other people's opinions and make sure that they respect yours - Try to live a morally virtuous life. It’s not easy, but it can be done - Life is a game full of ups and downs and ebbs and flows. When you learn how to play it, make sure that you play to win - Only you have the power to save yourself because in the end, no one is coming to rescue you.
At some point in your lifetime, someone will double-cross you and it will hurt. Especially when it is someone that you loved. I have come to terms that this is just an inherit part of life. It can be brutish sometimes, however, try not to hold on to resentments because they will only work against you.
Do not be afraid to come to terms with the past and make amends with the people that you have hurt. If you are willing to ask for forgiveness, you better be ready to give it in return - Forgiveness is a two-way street.
It is important that you embrace the past, no matter how difficult it might be - It is necessary in order to grow and make improvements in your life. If you become the historian of your life, it will ensure that you do not repeat the mistakes of the past.
No matter how difficult times may get, you need to know that there is a silver lining to everything and that the old adage, “one door closes; another one opens” is wholeheartedly true. I am a walking testament to this philosophy - Trust me on this one.
You have warrior blood running through your veins; have the courage to make your mark on the world in a way that it is yours and yours alone. There is no one else like you and I am the luckiest father in the world because of that. Being your father has been the most profound and intense experience of my life because you taught me how to love again.
One last thing, always remember that I am proud of you both!