By "our children", I mean it collectively, as in all our children. Recently, I was helping out our daughter by getting signatures for a National Honors Society application. She was invited to join, yea, she's that good. The people I got the signatures from all said nice things about her and wished her well. It felt good to know that she had a positive effect on people. Her life is so different from mine, academically and personally.
When I was growing up I had issues that kept me from fulfilling my potential. Family issues that impacted me and caused me emotional pain on a subconscious level. Pain that I tried to mask with sex, drugs and rock n' roll. As far as school went, I was there because I had to be and I did what I had to to get by, and I got by, that was it. College was pretty much the same thing, just get through.
Since I've gotten married and had children, I've had a lot of time to reflect on my life. I've noticed some patterns and made some decisions in regards to child raising. The main one being that I would give my kids what I didn't get. By this time I had talked to a few therapists and realized some things about my life. One, that a lot of my issues started when I was really little with the decisions my parents made about raising me and two, I didn't want my kids to have those issues in there lives.
What I did want was for them to grow up happy and secure. That decision would take and did take a lot of love, attention, and interaction. For the next eighteen years I did all that I could to make sure they knew they were loved and had nothing to worry about at home. It worked, today, they are well adjusted and doing well, much better than I did at that age with a wonderful world of possibilities ahead of them.
If there's one thing I want to say in this post it's that parenting takes a lot of energy and active involvement. Be there for your children. They really want you more than toys and things. Time with Mom & Dad are the precious moments that will last forever.