This blog is written with inspiration from The Things I Could Tell You Blog – cheers Melissa for taking me on a different tangent and making me think about the kind of boys I want to raise :)

This week’s prompt:

“If you could only give your children one piece of advice, what would it be?”

The quality that made me fall in love with my husband is his steadfast integrity, in his profession, his relationships with his peers and foes and also with his loved ones. Integrity makes a man. Without it, you will never succeed, not fully,  in life, professionally or personally. It is the one true thing that will keep you honest in a sea of thieves and it will hold you close to all that is really important in life.
Integrity is the opposite of hypocrisy, it speaks your truth and never deviates from what you know to be honest and right.
Integrity enables you to stand up to others for what you know to be right, even if it makes you an outcast, and as Edmund Blackadder said to “laugh in the face of fear” – although I have wondered at Blackadder’s integrity on MANY an occasion :)
Integrity is doing the right thing, even when you know that no one will ever find out.
~ Oprah Winfrey
(not sure if she actually said this in the first place but it is quoted to her as well)
Integrity can be as small as offering up the less burnt cookie to your little brother before he see’s the options or taking the blame for his actions when he was simply defending your honour at school.  It can be as big as giving away a lifelong friendship because he insulted your wife and burdened her heart or being able to listen to lies told about yourself and holding your head high, knowing them to be false in your heart.
I think it is mine and Hubbys job to teach our sons what is good and right. We need to teach them how to stand up for their beliefs and that it’s OK if others don’t agree – they shouldn’t give up their beliefs and their truth simply because others don’t hold the same opinions. If we can teach them how to have integrity we can teach them not to bow to peer pressure, to hold out for their dreams and to stand up for what they believe in, no matter how steep the cost.
My parents had this exact poster of Rudyard Kipling’s “If” poem (below) on the back of their en-suite toilet door and as a small child I would often choose to go sit there and read it though. Many of my ideals, truths and personal beliefs – my faiths if you will – stem from these words and I think it is mainly written about a Man who has integrity.
I can still quote it 35 years after first reading it – it is etched on my soul. Its want I want my boys to have and I will do my utmost to instil it in them; if they can be the man their father is I will know I have succeeded as a mother – if they have it, all other things will come to them, I promise them.
My Mantra for my Sons – I love you so very much.

’til next time,

Lisa
xxx