Building and rebuilding

Things don't always go according to plan. Without the right tools, without enough time, with mistakes and not enough training, the job may be left undone. Some things may even have to be taken apart and rebuilt before they can be the way they are supposed to be. This isn't about a house. This is about raising a baby into an adult. At a certain point, no matter what was done wrong, or what wasn't done at all, it becomes up to the adult child to take over and finish the job.
~Doe Zantamata
Blame and responsibility are two very different words.

When we are children, it is our parents responsibility to take care of us. Unfortunately, every parent is very different, and many were never given, nor developed the correct tools to raise a child.

A child needs much more than food and shelter. Nurturing and love, development of self-esteem, confidence, humility, consideration, and so many other qualities need to be developed to grow into a well balanced and happy adult. There really isn't even enough time to get all those things done in the brief 18 years that childhood is deemed to be.

It's natural, almost inevitable, for a teenager to notice where the parent has had shortfalls. At that age, no longer a child, but not yet an adult, there still isn't the ability to do things for one's self, or to have any idea of what to do.

Moving into adulthood, as the years go by, it becomes more apparent that life shows patterns from things done wrong, or left undone. The ability to trust, to forgive, to admit mistakes, to be motivated, and more show up if they're lacking over and over again.

In particularly difficult childhoods, a person could be totally justified in blaming their parents for the state their life is in. No one would disagree. But with blame goes power. To take responsibility for one's own life means to become empowered. To focus on now and on the future, developing those traits and tools for a happier, more successful, more peaceful life are the only way to achieve a life which lives up to the person's potential.

This cannot be done retroactively, and no parent, no matter how much they've learned since or how many times they apologize can go back and do it over, do it right. Sometimes, they did the best they could. Sometimes, they just didn't know any better. And sometimes, they just didn't understand what it meant to be a parent or how much their actions or inactions would impact the life of the person or people they chose to bring into the world.

Luckily, we're not the first people to walk the Earth. There have been generations upon generations of people; doctors, psychiatrists, scholars, and philosophers, preachers, pastors and more. They've all created a body of knowledge from which we can learn. Maybe it's counseling, maybe it's group support. It could be from reading books or attending or watching DVD seminars...or it could be a mix of all these things, along with a great deal of self-reflection. And maybe it won't happen overnight, or even after a few years or decades, but maybe the direction towards mastery of the self, wisdom, inner peace, self-love and acceptance is not supposed to be immediate and complete. Maybe one of the reasons for life is just to learn and to teach...interchangeably throughout a lifetime, always striving to do one's best and to give back as much as they receive.

Each person has a choice. Become empowered and seek to become better each day, or not. To make it a life worth living, and to result in a life well lived, the choice is clear. It's difficult, there is no easy route, and it is a lot of dedication and work, but every moment will be well worth the effort.

By Doe Zantamata

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