Family – An Introspection

I was called by many names in my lifetime: baby, sibling, teenager, Uncle, In-law, parent, grand parent.  At each stage, I took pieces of this journey and grew.  I am not my father yet many see him in my eyes as I see him in the eyes of my children.  We know that the joy of our childhood is lost as we grow and learn yet we yearn for both the learning and the childhood.  At each step, we know what we leave behind, sometimes in sadness, sometimes in joy, but always with the expectation of hope for the future.

As a child I rejoiced in my growth and maturity, as my parents grieved for the lost child that then grew into adulthood.  Yet, my parents again rejoiced in this new adult laced with strength, knowledge, guilt, and pain, knowing that the pure and innocent child would never return.  As my responsibilities in life increased, the role of my parents decreased.  Where once I was the student of their teaching, I then became the teacher.  My parents became the observers, judging the effectiveness of their own teaching.

Now as a grand father, I have become the observer.  I have grieved the loss of the childhood of my children, yet celebrated their growth.  Now I judge the effectiveness of my teaching.  And as I grow older with the hope of becoming a great grand parent, my role will again diminish.  My family never sought fame, only the happiness of holding the hearts of others.  Yet, I know that as I age into irrelevance, their hearts now beat stronger for others.

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About J T Weaver

The author of "Uphill Both Ways," a thought provoking series of stories about life, family, and growing up.
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40 Responses to Family – An Introspection

  1. karinvandenbergh says:

    Heart-warming introspections. In the process of ‘aging gracefully’..;)


  2. joannesisco says:

    Beautifully written and you’ve certainly captured how I’ve felt many times … especially now at this stage of my life.
    I’m glad to see that you haven’t stopped writing after all and are continuing to stimulate us with your profound thinking.


  3. Mama Cormier says:

    Beautifully written. My own children who are now adults are making us wait a long time to observe them as parents. One day….sigh!


  4. I’m so glad to see more posts up from you. I understand what you meant about moving into irrelevance – for providing the necessities to life, but as many have said here already, you have so much relevant knowledge to share and teach.
    You are a great teacher by example alone, but I will never forget, and will always appreciate, the time and insight you gave to me at a time that I needed a tough bird to push me through an intimidating door.
    I still laugh at the idea of being wound tighter than a tick whenever I get stuck. Anyway, looking forward to being able to hear about what’s swirling in your well-centred mind for a long, long time.


  5. Pingback: The 270 | J T Weaver

  6. Author Catherine Townsend-Lyon says:

    Hi J T,
    Happy New Year! The 1st person who commented to my words,…..I hardly doubt you’ll be irrelevant to your children and grandkids! Just a moving post. I wish my parents had your outlook on just be happy with the job they did, as kids don’t come with a “How To” manual… family was a wee bit Crazy..Great Post! Catherine Lyon 🙂


  7. Iamrcc says:

    “Age into irrelevance” I don’t think so. We may not have a prominent role in the lives of those we love, but we always have a role if it is only as an example of how to age gracefully and be at peace with oneself. Thank you for the visit and deciding to follow me.


  8. I guess you’re doing great with your family right now, JT!

    Sigh…if I ever become a parent, I’d like to be a parent living not only with youthful energy, but also with mature thinking!

    Right…I still need to mature more, though. Welp, better keep on doing my best and having fun, then!


  9. ksbeth says:

    i don’t think it really decreases, we just move from the foreground to a bit further into the background. we are still present in many ways.


  10. Mags Corner says:

    What an interesting post this is. I really enjoyed reading it and related to the feelings you expressed. Excellent write.


  11. Our lives are dIminishing and increasing at the same time.


  12. davidprosser says:

    Watching my daughter in life gives me a great gauge of how good we were as teachers. Watching her with my grandson allows me to see little mistakes we may have made with her (or so current thinking tells us) but to see how committed she is to getting things right for him. And the love flows on when she llows me the care of this beautiful child so like his mother created from love.


  13. Lynn says:

    Interesting thoughts JT. Although I have yet to become a grandmother, I am so proud of the people my children have become & often reflect on the teachings we have passed on to them. Our lives these days are filled with caring for our aging parents, another lesson for my husband and myself as well as our children, as we sadly let go of a time when our parents were vibrant & independent.


    • J T Weaver says:

      I was terribly saddened when my father’s advice became so dated. We went on to other things of course, but I missed that pocket philosophy so very much. Thanks for stopping by Lynn, I appreciate it.


  14. JT you have put my thoughts into words. Nicely said. Thank you for sharing.


  15. Wendy says:

    This encapsulates well life as we age, and moved into the beyond. I so identify with grieving the loss of my children’s childhood, yet wanting them to grow. That is the ache of parenting.


  16. Tom Heuerman says:

    “Age into irrelevance”: how true and how painful!


  17. I could not wait for my kids to become parents to get a dose of what they put me through. There is no justice as the grandkids are just delightful.


  18. Funny you say that you “grieved” the loss of your children’s childhood. I specifically remember being down for a few days when my children both graduated High School.


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