“Whoever you sit with, learn from their good qualities, leave their bad qualities”
“Listen to everyone, then do what you want”
“Listen to your mother”
“Pray as much as you can”
My father is full of advice. Experts say that fathers don’t spend enough time truly talking to their children and interacting with them. This is not true of my father.
From as far back as I can remember, my father has taught me with more than just his actions. Even when I was very young, he would challenge me to think in ways I hadn’t before. He would converse with my brothers and myself, engage us and make us question our own preconceived notions. He has always made sure he taught us values that were important to him. He mentions ayaat and ahadith whenever they are applicable.
When he sees that we are in need of advice, he will quietly say a few simple words and leave us to ponder over them. When I find myself in a situation that requires insight and wisdom that I lack, I find myself going to him, laying out my thoughts and concerns, and then sitting back, waiting for him to say something that I know will be helpful.
However, my father hasn’t just helped me grow by giving me advice. When I became more mature, he started debating with me and my brothers. He forced us to form our own opinions and defend them. Through our “discussions” with him, we realized we didn’t need to agree with the opinions of others, not even those of people older than ourselves. We became more curious and learned some key life lessons. Not the least of them being that there are always two sides to an issue. I also learned that the person with the loudest voice or the most words is not always right.
I can honestly say that my father has had a big influence in molding me to be the independent person I am today. I sincerely hope that I can pass on similar lessons to my own children inshaAllah.
Yasmeen is a mother of two who enjoys reading to her kids and trying new things