February 20, 2012

Karla’s Korner: Something for Nothing…

      I think we all need a touch point a place we can go to be inspired. Karla is my children’s teacher, a good friend, and a person with a heart of gold. I hope that her words will inspire you to do more. We are only as good as the people we surround ourselves with. It is important to listen with your heart and proceed with your eyes open. Enjoy!

Something for Nothing…

Have you ever heard the saying “they want something for nothing”? I have, and in today’s economy quite a few folks are consciously trying to figure out how to cut corners and pinch a few pennies just to get by; I am one of them.  Unfortunately,  there are a lot of folks wandering this earth who simply try to get by doing as little as possible. This past Friday I saw or shall I say heard a prime example of this and quite frankly it bothered me; enough so that I feel the need
to write about it.

I took the day off from work on Friday, which is something I very rarely do. I had won a contest in my school’s fundraiser and the prize was time off with pay, so I decided to cash in my “prize” and turn the upcoming three day weekend into a four day weekend. The first thing on my list of fun things to do that day was a much needed lunch date with my husband. He took me to a relatively new restaurant in town for probably one of the best roast beef sandwiches I have ever eaten and great conversation. Near the end of our meal, my phone rang and all of the sudden I had afternoon plans with my daughter. She was free for the afternoon and wanted to know if I would like to catch a movie with her. It was a pretty scary movie and whether she wanted to admit it or not, I think she wanted her momma to be there with her; at least that is what I keep telling myself. Having a few hours to waste before she was free from classes I decided to do a little shopping at the local K-Mart. Living in (or near) a college town as I do, one must always be aware of pedestrians darting across the street; there are pedestrians everywhere and even though I know that pedestrians have the right of way, I am always cautious when I make a trip through the crosswalk whether I am in my car or a pedestrian myself. After picking up a few odds and ends, I proceed to leave the store and head back to my car. As I approached the crosswalk in front of the store, I noticed a car approaching so I decided to stand still for a moment not knowing if the driver is going to stop. Catching a glimpse of a middle aged woman on the other side of the crosswalk, I was surprised at how quickly she darted out in the crosswalk and heads in my direction. Making eye contact with her I chuckled and said “I am always afraid to step out that quick, I am afraid someone might hit me”. Without any hesitation she replies, “Heck, I want them to hit me; if they do, I will be set for life”. Stunned, not knowing exactly how to respond, I walked away shaking my head. This woman would rather be hit by a car so that she could sue and collect a large amount of money than go to work and take care of herself.

As parents we strive to teach our children how to be responsible and hope that when they grow up they will become successful adults. Unfortunately, somewhere along the way our society has developed an idea of get what you can for as little as it takes. Now I am not saying that everyone is like this or that getting assistance when you need it is not a good thing, because I believe it is. However, individuals like this crosswalk darting woman at K-Mart have somehow developed the idea that getting by doing as little as possible is okay. At some point she has decided that this world owes her something for nothing; well, getting hit by a car and having to go through such a painful ordeal would in fact be something, but according to her it would be worth it in the long run because she would be set for life. My heart breaks for that woman and those in our world with the same mind set. For me, working for what I have has made me appreciate what I have more.

Being a parent of older children who now know how to make responsible choices and the importance of hard work and making their own way, I am thankful that I was that mean mom who made them earn their allowance each week. Just recently my 18 year old daughter thanked me for teaching her how to be responsible and take care of herself. Being in college and on her own, she is reminded how fortunate she is that she has certain life skills to help her get by. (Apparently there are quite a few college aged students who cannot even do their own laundry or clean a bathroom.) Teaching our children to be responsible should start at an early age. Small tasks assigned to small hands will one day turn into bigger tasks assigned to bigger hands. Learning responsibility is key in learning to take ownership of our own lives and not depending on someone else for our well being and existence. I have always looked at my family like a team. Everyone has a position on the team; we all have responsibilities and by each team member fulfilling their responsibilities, our team is a winner. And as each team member leaves the club house and moves onto the big leagues, I will know that they have the right equipment to play in their life game and win. I encourage you to teach your children responsibility at an early age. It is okay to say no once in a while and allow them to earn the things they want. It is okay to be the mean mom/dad and not give in to their every whim. Trust me, as difficult as it is to do, in the long run, your children will thank you…mine did.

Check out all of Karla’s Korner articles here.

Also, please visit Karla’s Lifetime Moms page and read her articles.

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