4 — You have to get good grades.
I didn’t always have a great relationship with my father. Many kids don’t have it, and it’s ok. So everything I learned from him was from mere observation.
To be honest, we learned to appreciate each other only in the last few years we lived apart. I never stopped loving my dad. Nor did he. We only had different ways of showing it. And only later in life, we learned our respective love languages.
I needed his affirmation. But he was an authoritative person who wouldn’t give it. So it took years to smooth our characters and meet in the middle. So here are 7 lessons I learned from my father that improved my life forever. But first, let me introduce you to the man behind the story.
7 Lessons I Learned From My Father
My father was born in a poor village. He found a beautiful wife, my mother, and had two children.
I don’t know how much you know about poor villagers and their lives. But if I had to describe them, I would use two words: hope and stillness.
- Poor villagers always hope for a better life.
- But they never take action, so they hardly change their life.
The life of a villager is full of commitments and obligations. They seem to move all day and progress toward an end. Yet, survival is their only end, and nothing else matters.
But my father never settled. He wanted his family to live better. He wanted his kids to have a better chance at life. So he broke the cycle and went abroad. And after five long years of struggles, he succeeded in his goal and took us with him.
Until then, I learned 7 lessons from my father that improved my life forever.
1 — Resilience is stronger than the odds.
When my father came to Italy for the first time, he thought everything would be more accessible. But first, he lost his parents. Then, his boss treated him as an animal that could only work. He was misunderstood and underpaid. But he kept going through everything. And he reached his goal anyway.
Every time life challenges me, I remember his resilience. And I noticed that time and patience can bring you far. So if you are struggling to reach your goals, remember that:
- you live in a fast world — everything might finish in a moment
- and if you give up now, you may have worked for nothing.
I hate to surrender one step away from my goal. And you should too. So keep pushing through because resilience is stronger than the odds.
2 — Love defeats any sacrifice.
My father never showed his emotions until a few years ago. He used to picture himself as a strong and independent man. So, many times, me and my sister thought he didn’t love us enough.
Kids often fail to understand their parents’ behavior. And we weren’t unique. But under his grumpy shield, my father always loved us. And he tried to teach us what he thought was better for our future.
Sometimes, he failed because of his old picture of life. Other times, he was right and knew how to teach us the values of life. But he never gave up learning and adapting to our ever-changing passions and mood.
So thanks to his sacrifice, I learned I could reach anything, even the most challenging dreams.
3 — Family comes first.
Toxic family members happen. Sometimes, they could even be your parents. But fortunately, my family wasn’t one of those cases. We always helped each other, so it was easy to love all of them.
But Dad taught me that family is not only about getting help. And although its members are the best support you can find, you must cherish them every time you can.
My father and his sister were always close. And we saw her and my uncle every weekend. Even today, we cook together and try to meet at least once every two weeks.
It became harder since I left the house. But we are trying our best.
And dad always wanted to keep the family united. He demonstrated it by sacrificing to bring us here. And he shows it every time he calls everyone at his house to eat and party together.
4 — You have to get good grades.
“Studying is your job. Everything else is on me” — I’ve heard this sentence hundreds of times. But for my father, allowing me to study and seek my path was crucial.
He didn’t need to tell me. I knew I had to study for my future. But he insisted every time he saw a negative trend in my grades.
Mom was more understanding because she knew better what I was studying and which were the most challenging tests. But Dad didn’t know everything. So he was often harsh on me and my sister.
Yet, without his discipline, I wouldn’t have gotten my position at my job. I couldn’t even enter this elite environment. Nor would I have had the writing consistency I showed when I had no results.
Most of what I own is thanks to the commitment I learned in school. So you have to get good grades. Otherwise, you won’t be ready for what comes later.
5 — Fight for what matters to you.
My father had many flaws. But not accepting any idea that was different from his was the worst.
He had a hard time trusting people. So he didn’t trust me when I told him I wanted to become a writer.
We fought a lot over this. But I am more stubborn than him — it’s one of my best qualities. So over time, he got more open-minded. And I learned to fight for what matters to me because that was the only way I got it.
Fighting for my ideas helped me find a strong desire to prove him wrong. And I think Dad must have understood it because every time I come up with a new idea, he challenges me.
So fight for what you value because nobody can tell you what that is.
6 — Perseverance always pays off.
You can make two choices in your life:
- You can have a life full of passions and never achieve anything extraordinary.
- Or you can obsess over one purpose and get the best out of it.
In the first case, you won’t achieve anything. You will spend your life jumping from one passion to the other. But you won’t become an expert in any of them. So you will know a little bit of everything, but nothing that stands out.
Yet, if you pick perseverance, you could create a life of opportunities. You could make a change in any direction you decide to take. And the only thing you have to learn is perseverance.
Dad was tenacious, and his discipline paid off dividends. He succeeded even if he suffered many years to get us here. But he could have given up at the first setback. And it would have been like nothing did change.
So learn to be perseverant. Pick your purpose and obsess over it. Become one with your passion, and it will pay off.
7 — Never lose your smile.
Dad lost his parents while he was away. So he couldn’t give his last goodbye to both of them. I know he suffered, but he never blamed anyone for it.
He talks about it a lot. Sometimes, I think this is his way of reconnecting with them. But even in the worst pain, he never lost his smile.
My father likes to party like nobody else in the family, besides me and my sister maybe. We love to dance and bring joy to the family. We took this from him. And I promised myself I would be the center of my family too when he won’t be there anymore.
I will take parties at my home. And I will have a good relationship with my sister and her future husband.
There’s nothing more important than cherishing joyful moments with the people you love the most. And there shouldn’t be time for grudges or resentment in your lives.
Only five years ago, I would have never thought I would write something like this about my father. But since I started living alone, my perception changed. And I understand and appreciate his words now that I have a job and starting a family.
He was right about some things. My studies were fundamental, so he pushed me to achieve good results.
But he also failed in other things. Parenting is not simple, and I won’t blame him. Also, nobody could have imagined the opportunities Internet could give. But at least he gave me the tools to discover my dreams. At least I know what to do in my life.
Dad gave me the strength to succeed and the positivity I couldn’t find anywhere else. And for this reason, I wanted to say: Thank you.
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