PEDRO or POT, he’s a village boy and a grandmother's product. A man of many worlds. He’s a writer, blogger and shares his Stories Online.
And the Long-Awaited Reunion Finally Took Place
Yes, that's right. It was a father-children life-changing family discussion. Does this sound familiar?
What an incredible moment and a day that was! It was an eventful day that witnessed an extraordinary gathering—as family issues took center stage and received all the attention they deserved. A premise that makes father’s teenagers’ reunion a family backbone.
As a father, I didn't want to miss one of the few chances to be with my children. Eventually, we succeeded in building a friendly relationship that would develop into a peaceful scene of rubbing minds together as we moved forward. Father’s and children’s meetings forge a better family understanding.
“I Just Want to Get By”
It became a golden moment and opportunity I was looking forward to and welcomed with much expectation. Moreover, as a young child, I never had such a warm relationship with my father, not even during my most impressionable years as a teenager.
After so long without being in touch, the opportunity to see my children was very significant to me. Fortunately, we were able to schedule the meeting. So, on a summer afternoon in 2017, my three boys and I were home together.
When everyone had sat comfortably on the couch with a beverage in hand, I decided to open the floor for discussion.
We talked about almost everything under the sun that affects our lives. Gradually, some personal opinions began filtering in, which would later be helpful as the discussion progressed. One said, "I've decided on what I want to do, 'I just want to get by.'"
A Father's Warm and Emotional Connection With Sons
My first reaction (though in my mind) was, “What on earth is this all about?”
Before I could say, son, what exactly do you mean by that? He started barring his heart out to me and his brothers, who were sitting next to him on the couch, totally transfixed, waiting patiently to hear more.
And he continued, “As I see things, I think I’ll just get by with anything I can lay my hand on.” I retorted, “You mean you just want to get by in life?” it was harrowing to hear my son speak with such conviction.
Wrapping my head around this new revelation, I knew that what I would say next could have many ramifications for our future lives as a family.
Especially since it was my goal to provide the parental care that I knew my children would need in their lives from then on.
For someone who lacked this warm emotional connection with my parents, I knew that I just had to make a difference in my own children’s lives.
Father's Reaction or Overreaction When Interacting with Sons?
My reaction to this unexpected question was disbelief, confusion, and hesitancy. Not to mention that three pairs of eyes were looking at me, wondering what I would say next.
Continuing with my response, I had to carefully choose my words so that my sons would not see me as a weak or an unappreciative father. Not only that, but I wanted to make sure that my teenagers did not discover that I was apprehensive about their brother’s radical and complex outlook on life.
Therefore, I cleared my throat and tried to compose myself. I knew I needed to recall an arsenal of valued philosophical ideas of importance that have helped me throughout my lifetime.
Critical among those include hard work, resilience, and a handful of other values that form the basis of a successful life.
Managing the Situation by Saying the Truth and Nothing but the Truth
When the opportunity arose, I was ready to see if I could seize the occasion to plant something meaningful in their lives. Consequently, it was upon me to take the bull by the horns and tell them the whole truth and nothing but the truth.
And this could only be done by convincing them with superior and persuasive arguments.
I agree that many parents would have approached this situation differently—especially fathers from a rich, nurturing family background with all that implies.
Father Finding Common Ground with Sons
You have every right to speak your mind, son. My moral duty is to lead you in the right direction as your father. Hence, I am able to tell you the truth. Even though it might taste bitter to you right now, I want to believe that you will be able to accept it in good faith.
I'm sorry to let you know that your stance is misguided. Things aren't always easy in this life for those who intentionally don't want to work hard.
Even if you were born with a golden spoon in your mouth, it's reasonable, proper, and necessary to try, at least for your dignity.
In this life, nothing comes easily, and I repeat, nothing comes easily that does not require effort or sweat on your part. And that can be viewed from different perspectives.
For instance, if you were a fisherman and didn't cast your net out into the waters to catch fresh fish, you might reach out for the floating dead ones.
You can blame it on our forefathers, who were cursed from the very beginning of creation, but things are likely to continue in this way till eternity.
My Sons, Do You Count on Destiny?
It may not be my place to talk about this often-discussed subject of “destiny” and its implications.
I'm afraid I must disagree with waiting for fate to guide you, taking all, I have tried to explain to you so far.
Pick yourself up and take charge of how your life should unfold. Without planning and working hard, having a destination is like driving without a map or GPS. Even the Bible says that if you don't work, you shouldn't eat.
Son Expresses Feelings After the Meeting Pause
The room was dead silent; you couldn't hear a pin drop. After waiting for about five minutes, I responded, "The floor is yours. We're here to listen to one another, so when you're ready."
You could tell that he had a nonverbal exchange with his brothers. He must have been signaled to say something. Was I ready to hear what he had to say?
And suddenly, "I'm sorry, Dad, for keeping you us waiting. I didn't expect our discussion to run this long; that was not in my wildest dream!
Anyway, I want to thank you for everything you shared today. I now see things more clearly and have a better understanding of what lies ahead of me.
"I found your presentation quite convincing, but a few points are still unclear in my mind." I didn't have to wait long to figure out what he meant. He continued, “In fact, some of these points made me believe, think, and behave the way I do.
To be sincere, Daddy, my friends are doing very well in their workplaces and others in their businesses, and none of them have a college degree.”
Don't They Say That All Roads Lead to Rome?
“After careful reflection, I decided that everyone must find their path to achieving their goals in life. So, when I said, ‘I Just Want to Get By,’ I didn't mean I would be lazy or stupid as you tried to paint it.”
He was now sitting at the edge of the couch in full animation, ready to continue. “Even though I wasn't born with a golden spoon in my mouth, that doesn't give me any right to sit back and do nothing.”
I also don't believe I would like to settle for floating dead fish. Not to mention being someone who refuses even to try to make life better for himself.
Nor do I fit into the group who may wish to travel blindly down the road without a road map.”
I sensed that what my son would say next would rock my world as a father. Well, let’s see what else he has on his mind. And he added, “The bone of contention has been the lack of communication between you, our father, on the one hand, and us, your children, on the other.
Daddy, you know very well that I am not lazy; if I were, I would have been in bed all day, but the reality isn't that because I wake up every morning to work. And I am trying to make ends meet every God’s Day."
Transform Your Dreams into Reality
Overall, ambition is the keyword. The desire, the impulse, and the drive to achieve a personal goal. The elements that determine growth (the constant increase in substance) and development (a process to follow for reaching maturity: Physical, mental, and physiological changes). Your goals and objectives will remain elusive without a healthy dosage of ambition.
A man must dream and be ready to transform that dream into reality. Hence, he should do more, work harder, give more, and have a philosophy in tune with a defined purpose and internal drive. This will propel him to make his dream come true and enable him to move ahead.
What about looking up to a mentor? I know I may not likely be your ideal choice for a role model or mentor, but you may need someone. Because sometimes, you need someone to look up to and follow (incredibly successful and honest people).
After all, it doesn't make sense to follow or copy a failure—not in vain, they say, "Success has many fathers, but failure is an orphan!"
The Rough Road Between Father and Sons to a Compromise
What I would say next would perhaps create a new level of understanding between myself and the boys, or would it create a wider gap? Well, here I come.
"Sons, now, as you can see, I am no longer addressing your brother alone but all of you because what I am about to say will benefit you all.
I am happy that your brother could openly speak his mind. And I am grateful for that without any reservation.
Regarding the points he mentioned, I want to clarify that I have taken note of that. Among other things, it includes the lack of communication between you and me.
As for his desire to copy his friend's lifestyle—though he wasn't born with a golden spoon in his mouth, I’m happy he stated that he still believes in hard work."
Taking a breath, I continued, "All I want to say is that you should keep moving forward with your excellent work ethic. Also, it would help if you could broaden your knowledge by taking some college courses. You don't have to return to school for several years; keep learning to get the ability and increase your skills.
Don't forget that attending college today doesn't necessarily mean that you must be confined within a four-wall institution. Mind you, we live in an era of Information Technology (IT).
Be Your Brothers’ Keeper
I want to believe that God has made it possible for us to achieve more than we expected in this first meeting.
We've cemented a solid foundation that will serve as a roadmap for us to follow in the future. I don't even know how much life I still have in stock for me.
I urge you to be your brothers' keeper and fight for your common good in my absence.
Fair enough, as I have repeatedly told you, I never had this type of warm fatherly rapport with my father. I had never met him, to begin with, let alone felt his warmth.
We were fortunate to be able to hold this critical August meeting. I hope I'm unconsciously transferring the "key or power" to all of you for posterity's sake through today's discussion. In due time, you will do the same to your children.
Now I'm getting to the most challenging part of our communication issue. As for communication between you and me, I will ensure that what we've started here today will set a substantial future precedent. I promise my continuous support, both financially and otherwise.
God bless you all.
Thanks for reading!
This content reflects the personal opinions of the author. It is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and should not be substituted for impartial fact or advice in legal, political, or personal matters.
© 2022 PEDRO O THOMPSON--- P O T