Grandma's Pearls

I would like to invite you to join me on a journey. On November 1st, 2003, my mother died of pancreatic cancer. Her passing meant not just that I had lost a cherished family member, or that our community had lost a compassionate human being, but as a grandma she had a plethora of "pearls" on nearly any topic of child rearing, and these were gone with her as well. When I became a pediatrician in 1988, I would tap into her common-sense knowledge on a regular basis. Through the years, I found that many of my pediatric patients' grandparents enjoyed sharing their words of wisdom with me in my office, and I found these pearls especially valuable when I started my own family over ten years ago.

The journey I'm proposing is a shared attempt to capture this vast collection of accumulated wisdom on my blog. "Grandma's Pearl's" will celebrate a very special group of individuals who deserve to have a forum for sharing their hard-earned life lessons with others. It will be a compilation of advice from grandparents from all walks of life...capturing the insights of the grandparent-next-door, to the still-out-in-the workforce grandparent, to more.

My hope is that "Grandma's Pearls" will be a ray of inspiration for both new parents and experienced parents alike. Not a "how-to" manual on baby care, but rather a collection of practical, no-nonsense tips on how to raise good kids. You can share a couple of sentences, a paragraph, or a full-blown story if you'd like. I welcome you to share your pearls of wisdom and wit with the world!

Questions (these are suggestions only)....substitute in "dad, grandfather," etc. where appropriate:

  1. What tips do you (or passed down from your mother, mother-in-law, or grandmother) have on raising caring, happy, responsible, and well-adjusted kids?

  2. What did you (or your mom) do right, and/or what could have been done better?

  3. Was there a transforming moment in your (or your mom's) life that served as a guide in raising children? As a result of this moment, is there a "pearl" to pass on?

  4. Do you have a favorite "grandmotherly" quote that has helped you in parenting your children?

To submit a "pearl" click on:



Saturday, October 8, 2011

The Importance of "It"

This pearl was submitted by international best-selling author, Paul Stoltz. He's the founder and CEO of Peak Learning, and the originator of AQ, Adversity Quotient, the most widely adopted method for measuring and strengthening human resilience. He is also a devoted husband, father, and grandfather!

When I was a hormone-fueled teen filled too much "tude," I turned to my father after he caught me lying about doing my homework and said, "Who wants to go to college anyway? Maybe I won't even go!" Instead of getting mad, my father paused, looked at me and said, "That's fine! A person's worth is not decided by his education. If you really don't want to go, and you're happy with the opportunities life offers supporting yourself without a degree, then don't go! That's entirely up to you."

That's when I learned a simple mantra that helped my wife Ronda and me with our kids and grandkids: If it matters more to you than it does to them, they've won, and you've lost. "It" can include grades, school, performance, piano lessons...anything. If it matters more to you than it does to them, they win, and you tend to lose.

So, as my father taught me, a great parent is one who helps kids discover why "it" matters to them.