Jason's Jive: July 2019
Dear Reader, I am back. Sorry for my unannounced absence last month. My father passed away on May 31, after battling an illness for the last two years. Most of my month of May was spent between my base in Maryland and The Netherlands, where my parents live. Death is never a nice experience. I am just thankful that dad has gone on to a better place and we continue to heal and move on.Father’s Day just passed, and I was able to reflect on the times I had been able to enjoy the presence of my Father and learn from his examples of integrity.I write this to reinforce the statement that it is important to train up a child the right way. When the child grows older, that child will not depart from what you have taught them.Growing up, television was not important to my parents. They cherished their radio a lot more. So, growing up with no television at home, I did not miss much, even though I wondered why we could not be like other families that had televisions, VCRs and more. The absence of those things encouraged us to play outdoors and sometimes make up games to play. I do not own a television set in my home, so my children invariably have generated a love for reading and doing other things such as baking, cooking, and of course their piano-playing.I say all this to point out the importance of the family unit and raising children right, by example of course.Coming back to integrity, I remember in 1996, as an English Teacher at a Government-owned school in St. Kitts, I stood up to the then Attorney General who was trying to flout the law at a public event. I respectfully refused to let him have his way and when it started to get confrontational, I walked away. Police at the scene looked at me in disbelief. I told them I had not done anything wrong and that he should know better. Understand, St. Kitts is a small island with a population of 40, 000 people. Doing what I had just done amounted to relative career-suicide as a public servant as I opened myself up to possible victimization. It never happened! For years, we would see each other, and he would at me and I would stare right back. After about nine years, we got back to being on speaking terms.So, I hope this serves to encourage parents, to be good examples at all times, for it rubs off on the children in one way or another, eventually. I spend a lot of my time talking to my children about integrity, dressing right, speaking right, being respectful and also being helpful. I pray one day it manifests itself.Next month, I will share my Hershey Park experience – I got tricked into going on a roller coaster – first time in 39 years --- and my last ever. That’s the Jive this month.