Respecting Your Elders And Those Who Have Come Before You
From an early age we have been taught to respect our elders and listen to what they have to say to us. They have lived longer than most any of us, putting blood, sweat and tears into everything they have done. They learned from experiences that some of us may never get the chance to experience or from some that we already have and have sought their guidance from. They teach and guide us so that we don’t make the same mistakes again and so that we can grow as a culture. There are people today who disregard the elderly and disrespect them as a show of resilience or even as simple as to being a rebellious punk. As a modern society we need to listen to the older generation and their words so that we can make a better future for younger generations.
Growing up I spent a lot of time around my grandparents and their friends who were elderly also. My grandpa was one of my first role models. He was a man’s man, working and toiling hard in the burning fields all day under the hot sun. After all his hard work he would always come pick my brother and I up from school just to babysit us. Being from the south and growing up in Texas he had a peculiar way in which he saw the world. He would tell my brother and I that no matter what we were planning to do in life he wanted us to get an education. My grandfather never knew how to read very well and only had as much as an elementary education. It was one of his biggest regrets and he understood the importance of having something that he didn’t have. Another one was for us to find a good job so that we could support our families and be able to make something of ourselves. He told us this because he had worked as a farm hand his entire life till the day he retired. He supported my mom, her siblings and my grandmother on just a farm hands wages. Along with this wisdom he shared and which would come in handy as my brother and I grew older, my grandfather loved to joke and give us weird but hysterical advice that I refuse to write onto paper.
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Another man that I have always admired and to this day work hard to be like him, is my father. Even though he isn’t exactly elderly, my father is quite older than what I am and there is a bit of a generation gap between us. He has taught me so very much over my life and is my biggest role model and my greatest mentor. Aside from the advice he has given me he taught me how to work. He taught me how to do the job right and to follow it to a “t”. This is the man who taught me how to rise early, cook myself breakfast, lunch and dinner, do my laundry, be an outdoorsman and so very many other things and characteristics that make me who I am today. He taught me how to tell jokes, how to think on my feet and be quick witted so I could stand up for myself. He gave me my love for music, educating me with different genres and bands that made that genre theirs and helped me discover each unique thing in every genre of music that helped developed my range of talent as a musician. It’s because of him that I am such a powerful force within the music scenes that my band has been involved with.
As a young kid, my father helped me by coming out of my shell and getting me into sports. He helped me go from being this awkward and nerdy kid to an energetic and agile athlete. He helped me develop my skills as a tight end playing football to even taking me to basketball every morning in high school, which was a sport he himself enjoyed the most. My father was an all-star basketball player in high school and was a great power forward. He taught me that just having a few key places to shoot from would make you a good player. I took the hint that maybe that was his technique in high school and what made him so good especially when I would play against him occasionally. By my father teaching me how to play sports I made more friends that way and learned to work and play well with others as a team. My main goal was to always impress my father every time I stepped on to the field, the court or my favorite, the stage.
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As I got older the relationship with my father was still there but it wasn’t as strong. My dad was starting to get old and after long days at work most of what he wants to do is lay in his bed, watch television and sleep. If I wanted to go somewhere or do something I would usually have to wake him up and ask for permission. After I had awoken him from his slumber each time he would do this sort of lecturing on where I was going, what I was doing, who was going to be there and when he expected me home. In a weird way I always looked forward to those little lectures with my dad. It showed that he really cared about what I was doing and what I was up to. These talks usually ended up with us talking for a little bit and discussing things that I had been wondering, things I needed to tell him and things that sometimes I needed to hear but didn’t always want to hear. He gave me so much advice and counseling on so many things and even when I have ignored him I regret my decision and wish that I would have listened.
One of the things that I admire about my father is how good of a dad he is to my brother and I. Growing up my dad didn’t have a father. He was raised by his mom and his family. For not having a dad around much my father turned out alright. He has helped raised my brother and I, along with the help of my mother, to be two fine young men who have been given much and want to give much back in return. My father taught me responsibility, strength, determination and how to be a man. He gave my brother and I a place to call home along with talents and skills that have helped us become the people we are today.
As a society we are taught to respect our elders and the people who have come before us. Our elders can be of almost of any age but it’s the ones that come before us that know the most. Because I have been given much and have had the opportunity to take advantage of the gift of a great family members in my life I’ve done so much more with my life than what I could ever possibly imagine. I’m thankful for my father and the man that he is, the good dad that he has been to me and a role model that I can look up to and model myself after for when I eventually have kids one day. My only wish is that I can be as good of a dad to my kids as my dad has been to my brother and I.
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