Today is a snow day! It’s my eldest son’s first experience waking up to a world of (a little) white and discovering he doesn’t have to fulfill an obligation for the day. How is that not fun?
All morning long, my boys have been begging me to go out in the frigid temps to “play” in the little bit of snow that’s out there. I told them they could definitely play in it, but not until I was better ready for the day. My eldest son (Cooper, 6) asked me what I needed to get done so that could happen and I told him. A little while later, when I was doing my hair, he asked me what was left on the list.
“I need to finish my hair and unload the dishwasher and then you guys can go out.”
He looked at me with his big brown eyes and sweetly said, “I’ll unload the dishwasher for you!”
I cracked up laughing, “Ok! You can try! Do your best”.
A few minutes later, I walked into the kitchen, tickled pink to see the boys working together to get the job done. The youngest, (Chase, 2) had offered his assistance. The eldest told him to take things out of the dishwasher and put them on the counters and then he would put them away. Teamwork.
Sigh. My heart was flooded with love at their sweetness. Sure, they wanted something. But they helped me with happy hearts, they worked together joyfully and they beamed with pride at their work when I walked into the room.
I gave them some money, (just because I wanted to) and thanked them for their help.
Did they do it all right? Nope. My silverware drawer is totally messed up. I’m sure I’ll continue to find things that were misplaced. But they didn’t break anything!
I don’t think that I would always have let the boys do this with such a playful and whimsical heart. Something in me would be worried that they would hurt themselves on a knife, break a glass and step on it, or fall off the counter top/chair pushed up to the counter.
But someone once told me, a mom of eight children in fact, that your children SHOULD help you. That one of the best marks of a good mom is that she has the skill and wisdom of delegation. And not only the ability to delegate, but the ability to correct what was done incorrectly with love and kindness rather than shame and condescension. (Which I should do later about the silverware drawer.)
I am so grateful for the lessons I’ve learned from others. I don’t have it all together and I know I’ll still mess up and do something hurtful they’ll remember forever. But the things I’ve been told make me a better mom and they give me an opportunity to have moments like I had today with my boys.
So you tell me now, what has someone once told you that impacted your parenting?