As parents, part of the job consists of raising your children right. That means teaching them right from wrong and steering them in the right direction to lead a successful life. My parents’ idea of steering my siblings and I in the right direction has always been keeping us away from anything that can harm us, by laying restrictions, establishing curfews, being over protective, and their most famous philosophy of “We’ll teach you everything so that you can’t make any mistakes in life”. My parents were head strong in this philosophy, and keeping us so restricted that mistakes were not an option.
Time and time again, since I was young, when my parents would tell me not to do something or stay away from this and that I always found it in my best interest to do the opposite. There was this one moment when I was a child and my parents told me not to run around the house. I didn’t listen and ran after my cousin anyways, on the way running into the other room I missed the sharp turn and ran right into the wall busting my head open.
Another time when I was about ten, I was told not to go to the store after dark by myself. The neighborhood that I lived in was not that safe at that time of night. On my way out of the store a shootout occurred. I was scared is because I didn’t know what to or where to go. I know this could have happened anywhere but taking into consideration my neighborhood at the time this was not a smart decision for me. Another example was while I was here in college.
When I was a freshman I thought it was ok to miss my 8:00am math class because the teacher used PowerPoint notes that were posted on blackboard after class each day and plus I had friends in the class. The notes were confusing and my friends barely understood the work and I felt like I was too far behind to catch up so I didn’t bother to understand the work, go to tutoring or anything. In return I failed the class with an F. Spring semester I retook the course and went to class everyday. I definitely learned from my poor judgment.
Now that it’s some time later I look back and I am glad that I did the mistakes I did because I would have not known everything that I do today. Making mistakes is a vital part of learning and that’s how I come to believe that good judgment comes from experience but that experience comes from poor judgment.
If you enjoyed this essay, please consider making a tax-deductible contribution to This I Believe, Inc.