I am a big fan of Khalil Gibran, a Lebanese-American artist, poet, and writer. Recently, I went searching for his passage on children, which I remember my mom had clipped to a picture of her own three children in the dining room of my childhood home.
Growing up, my dad would tickle my siblings and I, and when we screamed in delight, “Stop, stop, stop!” He would tease, “But this is my leg! I can do whatever I want with it!” I’ve heard similar statements from my husband when my stepson protests something or another, “But Daddy made you, you need to listen to me!” Now that I have given birth to my first, I understand how these men, and many other parents, may feel. It is powerful to know that you created another human being and easy to feel as if this human being belongs to you. After all, we brought them into this crazy world and we carry the heavy responsibility for teaching them how to navigate through this complicated maze we call “life.”
Which is why I think the following passage from Khalil Gibran’s book, The Prophet, is valuable for all parents and future parents to read and remember as we also navigate through this complex job we call “parenting.”