A baby is born with a need to be loved - and never outgrows it.
Frank A. Clark

Our family

Our family
October 2011

Sunday, May 6, 2012

Big lessons

I had a big talk with my toddler today. He was marching around the house grabbing at everything he saw and proclaiming "mine".  And it was not a sweet, calm..."mine?" As in...'can I have this?' It was a declaration. "Mine!" He might as well have been planting little Hank flags on everything he touched because he was claiming it as his property. "Mine! Mine cup, mine brush, mine shoe, etc..." (We have not practiced conjugating verbs yet, so he does not have the me-my-mine down yet...but give him time, he's very bright.)

So after about 5 minutes of this I finally had had enough. I turned to him and said...
"Ok buddy, we have to come to an understanding about something. Nothing in this house is actually yours. It is all Mommy's. This cup is mommy's and this shoe is mommy's. None of it is Hank's. Mommy gives things to you for you to use and enjoy because I love you...but you do not own anything. You may hold that cup, but it is not yours and if Mommy needs to use it then you will give it to me with a happy face. Do you understand?"
"Otay Mommy." And he runs out of the room.
As I turn to follow him this little voice pops into my head and says "the silver is mine and the gold is mine says the Lord." My first reaction is...perfect this will be a good application of that verse for Hank(I know, he's just 2, but memory verses aren't far off, ha!) but then I realize that the the voice is probably the Holy Spirit and the verse was probably not meant for my child.

Dang! I hate it when I end up learning a lesson that I thought I had already learned and was trying to teach someone else. Can't I just lay down the law and walk away feeling the satisfaction of my parenting abilities with out having to actually apply it to my life?

The little speech that I just gave my almost 2 yr old has been turned on me.

Nothing in this house is mine. It's all the Lord's. The Lord gives me things so that I can use them and enjoy them because He loves me, but I do not own anything. I may hold that __________, but it is not mine and if He needs to use it then I will give it to Him with a happy face.

Ok Lord, I get it. I understand.

Haggai 2:8
'The silver is Mine and the gold is Mine,' declares the LORD of hosts.

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

oh my toddler...part 2

Being the mother of a toddler, there are some days when you feel like you are doing everything wrong. Nothing seems to work. Between the fits, screaming and the "mine's", you seriously start doubting your parenting abilities...or lack there of. No amount of time-outs, no reasoning, no swats, no rewards seem to be working. And when you when you put your child down for the nite you pray with them that "when he wakes up in the morning he will be a happy boy, he will have his listening ears on and that Jesus will help him to obey."

But then there are days like today...when it seems that a new light is shining upon your house. No time-outs are needed. Your child is listening and obeying ON THE FIRST REQUEST. There are no screaming fits. You take him to the grocery store without incident. In fact when you pass another mother who has a screaming toddler in her basket you smile sweetly and THANK THE LORD that for some reason that is not your child today. Other people even comment on what sweet boy you have, and you just smile and say thank you...knowing that one thing could upset this apple cart at anytime. Just keep moving and pretend like this is how it always is...like a no hitter in baseball, you just don't talk about it.

You are able to make it thru 3 stores, a visit with friends at their office and thru lunch...and your child is being practically angelic. Naptime comes and he says, "tank you mommy" as you lay him down...be still my heart.

And even now, as I hear him jumping up and down in his bed instead of napping I can't help but think how somehow he's starting to get it...or I'm starting to get the hang of this new stage we're in...or we're just starting to navigate better together.

I've been reading Bringing up Boys by James Dobson...excuse me Dr. James Dobson. And when I say I've been reading it, I mean it's going on month 4 and this book is less than 300 pages. But this is a soak it in read...not a get thru it quick so I can watch the movie read.
Seriously though, it's a must read for anyone with boys...of any age. And if you are one of my friends who is currently pregnant with a boy you will be getting this book from me as a baby gift.
You're Welcome!

This is the excerpt that has hit home with me the most so far, it's like he was spying on our house and he knew my frustrations...the phrases in (parenthesis) are my side notes, not Dr. Dobson's...
"...little boys begin to pull away from their moms during the period between fifteen and thirty-six months. Boys, even more than girls, become negative at that time and resist any efforts to corral or manage them(phew, I thought it was just me!). They say no to everything, even to things they like(ha! so true!). They run when called and scream bloody murder at bedtime. They usually respond better to fathers - but not very much."
This was music to my ears. To hear that we are not ill-equipped parents, but that this is completely normal for a little boy was exactly what I needed to read. But yet, he goes on...
"...this is a moment of opportunity for Mom. She must take charge during these delightful but challenging days of toddlerhood. Respect for her authority and leadership are rooted in this period, and opportunities that are lost will be difficult to recover later on. Just remember that boys desperately need to be supervised...and civilized, quite literally."
Dang, and I was hoping to leave all the hard stuff for Kris to do.

I remember my parents reading a lot of parenting books and marriage books growing up. I thought they were just nerdy. Come to find out they were trying to learn how to survive raising me.

I get it now.

...so blessed to have parents who were willing to survive me.
...so blessed to be able to parent this sweet boy on the good days and the hard days.
...so blessed to know that God has equipped me, even when I feel inadequate.