Our perceptions of others are often wrong. Take me, for example. I was born and raised in Italy and moved to Canada a few decades ago. When my son was growing up, some of my friends criticized me for my lack of Italian-ness—I don’t drink coffee or wine, and I seldom eat pasta. At the same time, they stereotyped me as the overly protective Italian mother who would have a hard time letting go of my son after high school.
I proved them wrong. The first year after my son left for university, I wrote three books and created a fabulous new life for myself. My son, an engineering student living on campus, was so busy I barely ever saw him. Both of us thrived in our separate lives, much to the disbelief of my friends.