While there is little you can do about your ancestors, there is something that you can do about your descendants. One thing that prevents a man from being a good father is that he hasn’t completed being a boy. To be in your children’s memory tomorrow, you have to be in their lives today. Having children doesn’t make you a father, raising them does.
There are many of us who were raised in unstable families but we don’t have to pass it on to our children. We don’t have to fight in the presence of our children. We can choose to shield their emotions from our disputes as adults. To a large extent, you are a product of your early relationships.
Unstable parents create insecure children. Stable parents raise stable children. Children need affection (hugs, kisses), attention (listening) and affirmation (positive words), every day. When a man loves his wife, it creates security and stability. The best gift a father can give his children is to love their mother. Children learn how to handle feelings, losses, failures and conflicts at home.
Regrettably, parenting can neither be delegated nor suspended for a while as we work for the ring of fame and fortune. The growth of children is irreversible. Like a young tree it takes the bends directed by the gardener. So is the life of a child. You can’t shape it in adulthood. You can’t pick it from where you left after you reach the top in your career pursuits. It’s always easier to model young boys than to rehabilitate grown men.
If you invest in your child, you don’t have to invest for your child. Children require presence, not presents. No amount of gifts and meeting of financial obligations can replace your personal presence. Any written will can be torn in a few years after the demise of the writer of the will. The only sure inheritance that you can leave behind is the investment you make in your child, not for your child.