Life lessons that you never forget
Part of growing up is to make mistakes. That is how we learn best. Sometimes even the most well intended actions can turn out to be big mistakes. Remember any of your own? If your guardians played this well you may have gotten long lasting life lessons out of them.
My personal favorite is from the time I was around 8 years old. Our neighbor had somehow managed to grow these pretty mushrooms on their front lawn. They were even edible too. So one morning I decided that we should have mushrooms on our lawn as well. I went over and yanked out the mushrooms one by one out of the carefully manicured lawn. Then I proceeded to “plant” them into our lawn.
Once my parents got up, I “surprised” them with the beautiful sight of mushrooms. “Hey look, we grew mushrooms too – overnight!”, I exclaimed in delight. Well, needless to say my dad only needed to look at the bare lawn next door and then compare it to ours with all the white speckles of mushrooms on it.
“Are you sure that this is the story you want to go with?” my dad asked me how only parent can ask who already knows the answer to the question. I totally caved and expected a great tongue lashing. Instead I got a brilliant life lesson: I was to go over to the nice neighbor and apologize for what I had done – by myself.
If going over there was not bad enough, but facing the victim of my ill-fated attempt to make my parents proud of me had my heart beat right out of my chest. I rang the door bell and the poor woman totally melted my heart by being understanding and totally nice about the whole thing. I know that I helped out in her yard as punishment.
I learned a whole lot from the incident. For one I learned that fessing up to your mistakes early on makes for a much better overall outcome and a fast recovery from it. Most of all I learned that the best lessons in life are learned on your own. I am glad my dad made me apologize personally.
How about you? Can you recall lessons like this? Please do share in the comments. My call to action is to ponder how you would handle situations with your children (or somebody else’s for that matter). Can you put them into a situation where they have to bail themselves out and apologize in person? It would be the brilliant thing to do.