I wrote the following for a book I contributed to recently. Presenting these words to my parents was truly a gratifying experience. The following has also been appended to the About page. –My best.
John Erik Metcalf â€œPut yourself in their shoes.â€ â€œDo you understand why you shouldnâ€™t do that?â€ â€œRemember the Golden Rule?â€ These are phrases that punctuated my upbringing. An only child, I grew up in the hill country north of San Antonio, Texas. I was homeschooled until eighth grade, when I chose to enroll in public school.
My parents, moderate conservatives, both work primarily from home â€“ teaching me there was a natural fit. Their approach was similar to the Montessori Method. Iâ€™d focus on one subject as long as I wished, sometimes weeks, when I became uninterested Iâ€™d move to another. The computer, first a Tandy 1000, was incorporated into many of my lessons. I wasnâ€™t allowed to play games much, so Iâ€™d recode them, then â€œtest â€˜em out.â€
I recall running errands as a family; my father would proclaim â€œLetâ€™s be Encouragers today.â€ Encouragers was a name conferred upon us by a neighbor years ago, itâ€™s an exercise my parents have always taught: inspire others with confidence wherever you are. A practice I strive to carry on today.