Seeing Yourself Through Your Child’s Eyes: A Personal Story

Mar 18, 2020

It isn’t often that we get a chance to see ourselves as our children see us. But I recently received that gift when my daughter Jackie wrote the post, “My Life Growing Up with a Powerful CEO as a Mom” for the Daily Californian blog (cleverly called The Daily Clog). For those who don’t know, the Daily Californian is the student-run newspaper at UC Berkeley.

The post was created in honor of International Women’s Day, but when I read it I have to admit I didn’t feel like the powerful, fearless woman she described. I was more a pile of mush. (Funny how our kids have a way of doing that to us.)

Why did her words have such an effect? Maybe this except will help explain it:

“While she has always amazed me, growing up with such a busy mom was hard at times. Not understanding why she was always working was difficult as a child when a lot of my friends’ moms were home more often. But as I grew older, it only impressed me even more that she could single-handedly run not only her own company so successfully, but also her family. I’ve learned so much from having such a strong and hardworking mom. While I sometimes struggle to voice my opinions, my mom tells it like it is and doesn’t take anything from anyone.”

Although there might be some debate as to whether that last sentence is a virtue or a liability (LOL), I am so proud that Jackie was able to see past the things she may have wanted strictly for herself in order to understand the bigger picture. I am also glad that she found inspiration for her own life in my story.

Isn’t that what we all wish for? That our kids will take the best parts of us and use them to become even better?

I was also touched by this statement:

“The greatest lesson she has taught me is to believe in myself, even if no one else does. Her mantra is, “˜think you can, think you can’t, you’re right either way.’ And while my dad and I make fun of her every time she says it, it really is true if you believe in yourself, anything is possible. If you don’t, you’ll have no chance of achieving whatever it is you want.”

Yes, I do say that a lot, but only because I truly believe it in my heart of hearts. Jackie is one more proof point that it is true.

As you can probably tell, I am one very proud and humbled parent. But it’s great to see, after all the trials, tribulations, laughter, tears and battles that go along with raising a child, that in the end our relationship not only came out intact but that she sees me in such a special light. All I can tell you is the feeling is mutual.

May you all have the opportunity to see yourselves through the eyes of your children, and may you like what you see.

Jodi Amendola

Jodi is an accomplished leader with 25 years of experience developing, implementing and executing high-impact, integrated business-to-business public relations and marketing campaigns. Since 2004, she has served as CEO and co-founder of Amendola, where she has led campaigns for countless industry giants and start-up companies.