When you were 10, you vowed that you'd never tell your kids, "Wait until dinner" or "Because I said so, that's why." Being a grown-up can stretch your patience, though. Having kids of your own may have you hurtling through time to the early days of your youth for an effective response to the bedlam life throws at you. You may be shocked to hear those very words, as well as other haunting echoes from the past, coming out of your mouth when you least expect it. The day you realize that you twirl your car keys just like your mom used to or crack your knuckles before every meal just like your dad, may be the day you decide you've grown up at last.
Is it really a big surprise that a few of your parents' behaviors might sneak into your child-rearing handbook or interpersonal lexicon? The filial apple doesn't fall very far from the formative tree, and knowing that you share some qualities in common with your parents may be kind of comforting -- after the shock wears off, that is. If your parents are gone, echoing their sentiments and adopting a bit of their style (whether you realize it or not) may be two of the biggest tributes you can give them.