A Walk With My Son in the Angrignon Park

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It was a fine and beautiful Sunday, a perfect autumn day. There were no clouds in the sky and the temperature was 9 degree Celcius. I dragged my son for a walk in the Angrignon Park at the City Lasalle where we live. I say drag because he almost always tend to say no to my suggetions, like taking a walk, doing roller blading, swimming, etc. It took me quite some effort to get him out.

It was fresh and nice in the park. Not many people, a few enjoying their last BBQ and a few taking their walk. We saw quite many Chinese there as I know as a mortgage broker that quite some Chinese bought properties in Lasalle.

Busy all Spring and Summer, I myself didn’t have much time visiting around except once canoeing and another time kayaking with my son and friends in Boucherville. Taking time walking in the park, especially in Angrignon Park was the first time since 1999 when I was perching in one of the new condos just nearby.

My son arrived and started living with me last July. He is now close to 20, a tall slim handsome boy. He had been living with his father in China all the time,  with me visiting him every year for a few months. For sure, we would wonder how I kept the relationship with him while most of the time living here, not there with him. What I say is that even though we live with our children side by side 24 by 7, it is not guaranteed that we will have a good communication with them and nor that we will have a good relationship with them.

I remembered that a few years ago, I was taking a walk with one of my aquaintances and her son then 11 or 12 years old. She called herself a writer who wrote about children’s education and still writes about many stuff. I was quite shocked by the way of her being with her son and the relationship between them. The whole time we were walking by the Fleuve St-Laurent, the son had always kept a big distance from us! He walked a bit closer only when his mom yelled at him! I tried to talk with him, but he showed not much response! Then his mom said to me: Aiya, he is just like that, very frustrating! It seemed that he was in his world having nothing to say to us and her mom on the other side, neither had anything to say to him except giving him lectures and criticizing him even in front of people…

My son was not yet here with me then. I was hoping that my son would do better and I would be very different in the ways of being with him as well…One thing for sure, I do not agree on criticizing children in a negative non-constructive way and on thinking that children should always listen to and do what their parents say as my parents and many Chinese parents had been doing and many still have been doing all the time. I am determined to do different and better! After all, as our Chinese saying goes: Children not educated is the fault of the Father ( we now mean the Parents)! For a young man in his late teens or early twenties, especially in this important critical transit period of his life from his childhood to adulthood, from one culture to others, the parents certainly are playing very important roles…

My son is not a very talkative person. He is very pleasant and takes care of people as he was educated as a Chinese, such as pouring water for other people around and putting meals into other people’s plates( which I do not do!). He does what I told him to do, even some renovation jobs and he is at ease with people and starts to asociate though very slowly with the society…I was told by my colleagues that  he is a good boy! As many of my friends said to me: he is a person with things in his eyes. I take it as an absolute compliment and feel very happy that my son turned out to be like such as he is now…but I feel that I haven’t seen the light in his eyes, the light of spirit, the light of love and sharing, the light which shows his pursuit, gratitude and that he is curious about life and is willing to understand life, the light that will lead him into the wonderful direction into which he is growing…but I surely believe that I will in the future and I am working persistantly to achieve this goal as a parent.

Through the over-lapping maple leaves, falling,floating, through those gold, yellow and some still green, the sun had his ways for us to see its magnifiscent rays. Walking through the woods with closer trees moving faster and farther ones slower, we saw beautiful stereotyped space full of different sized and couloured leaves radiant with different shades of golden beams of sun rays. It is through these colourful leaves shows the wonders of changes and beauty and values from different angles; it is through time that we work bit by bit together with our children…Things will work out wonderfully with time and patience like the Sun is working out magically the beauty of the woods in autaumn! On the walkway, I was trying to talk to him about Ralph Waldo Ermerson, the American 19th century thinker and writer( transcendentalist), his famous and generations-inspiring essaie Self-Reliance…

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