Lessons learned from Nick


Singer/Songwriter Billy Joel wrote a song entitled, “Honesty.” The words make me sad, he said that “everyone is so untrue.”  Well I have to say that not everyone is untrue.  My son Nick is completely honest, even when it might be more comfortable to not be.  He doesn’t have a social filter and he will answer questions truthfully.  Sometimes he even says things that I or others have been thinking, but we didn’t say them out loud.

One day when he was still in High School, he was in his bedroom and I heard him say a bad word.  He was frustrated about something, I can’t remember what it was, but I do remember the following conversation.

Nick loudly said, “Sh**!”  I overheard the swearing and running into the room yelled just as loudly at him, “What did you say?”  He turned to me and repeated, “Sh**.”  I thought that he was modeling his language after someone at the High School.  I was so mad.  I said firmly back to him, “Who did you learn that from?”  He paused for a moment, looked straight at me and said, “You.”

I was shocked, he was absolutely right.  When I got frustrated, that is what I said in exasperation.  He was modeling someone’s language all right, it was mine. My other kids remember this experience with great fondness, especially whenever I have tried to correct their language.

What if everyone in our world was completely honest?  What would it be like if we heard the truth from the news media, politicians, the weather people, our co-workers, our neighbors, our family.  I think that it would be incredible.  I try to model my behavior after my completely honest Nick.

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