Monday, June 13, 2011

thankful for my gifts week

This morning, I was mad to even get out of bed. I was feeling sorry for myself. Sorry that I had three kids and had to pull my exhausted butt out of bed AGAIN to hit the floor running with diaper changes, breakfast, getting dressed, maintaining a house and responsible for three other lives each day, in addition to my own.

I opened the door to the babies' room. I did not have the positive attitude one should have when greeting two adventurous toddlers who are eager to begin their first journey of the day. I was grumpy. Not overly kind.

The morning went on...

The boys played outside for a bit, and when they came in, we had an early lunch. I perused the fridge, not very inspired to make anything. I decided on leftovers of whatever I could scrounge up. Each child was given the choice I pulled out that made them say, "mine!" (Theo) or "Yum!"(Mason). One had veggie chicken nuggets warmed up and dipped in ranch, another half a leftover PB&J (I TOLD you I save everything!), another pretzel sticks and half a veggie burger.

Theo (who has recently decided that eating at the table is for the birds and refuses to eat unless he is a)on the floor or b) being fed to) plucked his food from the table, piece by piece (including the plate itself) and plopped his butt on the hardwood floor in the kitchen.

Great, I thought- Another crumb mess for me to pick up. Will pulled a blue crate (that 2 minutes previous had held a great number of stuffed animals ) into the kitchen and decided to eat in there. Mason was the only one who sat at the table. And today was a day I was just way too out of sorts to fight this battle.

And then I sat at the table and watched them. And something clicked in my brain. Instead of seeing a child who was stubborn and making more tasks for me, I saw a determined free spirit, one who chose to picnic and relax in a new location rather than eat at the same old place.

I saw a 3 year old that probably imagined what he would do with that blue crate as I was calling his name for lunch- he emptied all the little animals out and used his imagination.

I saw a 7 year old that is fiercely loyal to his mama, and sat at that table to show his little brothers how to behave, and respect their mother.

I saw the true innocence of who they are. They are NOT just my three little lives to raise, they are my three little souls to grow. They each have their own path and sometimes the way I raise them blocks that path.

Now, I am not saying children can do as they will. I believe strongly in clear boundaries and teaching the consequences of crossing those boundaries. However, sometimes, we have to move out of their pathway and let them cross the boundary a little and enjoy life.
 Maybe you already know this. But, ME, I am just learning it. :)

My children bring so much joy to my life, and many times I choose to focus on the depressing instead. This week, I will share with you some lessons my children have taught me- about life, love, joy, myself, themselves, etc.

Feel free to join me in the comments or on your own blog. :)


bike to work year said...

Love this. It's oh so hard as parents to not try to force our children into a mold... We all want them to grow up and be respectable members of society.. But at what cost?

Your an awesome momma.. (but I am biased)

Dawn said...

Good stuff, Nicole!

A. said...

What a nice thought to have! It's too easy to get caught up in all the small (and large!) ways our kids inconvenience us, and worthwhile to see things from their perspective once in a while and foster their differences. I definitely struggle with trying not to be a stick in the mud as far as my kids are concerned (need to REALLY follow my mom's mantra to "pick my battles"). Sometimes I wonder WHY I care so much about some of the little things, when I could just let my little ones be a bit more off the wall. It can be hard to strike a balance between allowing some growth/freedom and making sure we're not raising hellions, right?

Thanks for commenting on my blog!

♥Heather, Cash and Caleb♥ said...

Dude, this made me sob! I have been so terrible about directing Cash in the ways *I* think he should go and not letting him just be, Cash. Thanks, Nicole....