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Parents are people too

| Thursday, September 17, 2015

I recently started watching a Korean variety show called “The Return of Superman.” It’s a series that follows the daily lives of fathers and their adorable children, ranging from seven months to 11 years old. Each episode captures the adventures that unravel when these men are left to care for their kids for 48 hours without the help of their wives.

I only started watching this because of my mom. She got hooked on the show last winter, and her favorite stars are these two-year old triplets. Now, I’ve never liked kids, but for some reason, watching this show is my procrastination method of choice this semester, and it’s made me realize some things about my own parents.

Aside from the hilarity that inevitably ensues when children are involved, there are a lot of moments that are quite touching. One father nearly cries tears of joy when his twins walk for the first time. Another takes his sons bungee jumping to build their self-confidence. In segments throughout the episodes, all the fathers talk about how they’ve gotten closer to their kids thanks to the program. Despite their struggles, the love they have for their children is unconditional.

In a scene I distinctly remember, one father was talking about how his child gave him another reason to live. He described his wife and daughter as his spring in the midst of winter, because at the time, he had been struggling with depression.

This made me wonder if my parents had similar experiences. They never talked much about their hardships, and I never talked to them about mine, but we’ve recently been able to open up to each other more. I think they’ve loosened up a bit because the majority of their parenting is done. Now we can get to know each other beyond the parent-child dynamic. Every time I go home, I learn more about what they are like as individuals.

It’s a sign of growing up to realize that your parents are people, too. Watching this series helped me understand a bit more about what things are like from their perspective. Everything they do is out of love for their children, and I appreciate this so much more as I get older. So let’s take some time today to call our parents and thank them for everything they’ve done for us. Keep in mind that despite any faults we may have, in their eyes, we are perfect.

The views expressed in this column are those of the author and not necessarily those of The Observer.

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