This book tells about my experiences and insights in raising my only child from widowhood through remarriage. It covers the years from the mid-70s until the early 90s. It was during a period of time when schools didn't have security guards on campus, where bullying and violence were not as intense and rampart, and when computers were not a standard teaching tool in the classroom. Cell phones, iPods, iPads, and digital cameras that have permeated our lifestyle and daily existence today were unheard of.
My experiences speak of a time when raising kids were not as demanding, as challenging, and as complicated as what parents and schools are battling with today. The myriad advances in technology and science have taken center stage in our lives at home and at work that have greatly affected our lifestyle and the way we look at things. The playing field has dramatically changed for parents, children, and society in the wake of all these advances in technology and the decline of moral values and positive role models.
During my son's school days, not many children were diagnosed with ADD and ADHD as they are now. Not many of us were dependent on pills in combatting our problems from ailments to losing weight. Obesity was not a big issue. Teenage pregnancy in high schools was not a common occurrence. There were less broken homes and less households and families with single parents. Families were more into eating together as their social hour for bonding and keeping track of each other's activities and happenings during the day.
It was a different time altogether; simple with less distractions and complications. Yet in the midst of all the changes and nuances in our lives, the human element…how we deal with ourselves, with our children, with others and with each other… is ever present and will always play a major role in our lives regardless of time and space. It transcends any time period and crosses cultural and physical boundaries as we wade through our experiences and find solutions to our problems. A new invention will come and go in light of another new invention or an improved version of the old. But the family unit still is and will continue to be the basic source of our survival and the core of our existence. Love of family, our human relationships, and our social interactions are still the driving forces that spur us into action to achieve greater heights of fulfillment and satisfaction. Finding the right balance between our moral values and the technological world becomes a must if parents are to be successful in their child-rearing practices and experiences.
I hope that my reflections and perceptions will help parents who are still raising their children gain perspectives on how to look at their situation and develop the ability to deal with the world and their life with trust and confidence. When they accept their life for what it is, they can work on how to make it work for them. They will be more aware of what's going on and what to look for in dealing with their children and be able to make solid decisions. Then they can deal better with the present and plan wisely for their future.
The world is full of opportunities and possibilities. Your commitment to evolve with the changing tide and your willingness to stretch your potential will spur you on to be the best you can be to yourself and to your children. In the end they have you to thank for when it's their turn to be parents and reinvent the wheel of the cycle of life.