Sometimes you just need a reminder. Sometimes that reminder will help you get through another temper tantrum, another battle of the wills, another napless day. This is that reminder for me.
I am writing it so it sticks. So I have a harder time forgetting. So that in the midst of tiredness and weariness, I can remember. God did this with the Israelites so many times. He would have their leaders, whether Moses, Joshua, one of the many prophets retell the great story of His deliverance and faithfulness.
So here is the story I will remember. Its simple. Its probably not unlike many stories other moms could share, but this one is about my little guy.
Seth. Sigh. Yes, we are deeply in the “terrible twos” with him right now. Not many days go by right now when I don’t think: am I doing something wrong? Are we really just missing something?
We were having one of those afternoons with Seth a couple weeks ago. He just didn’t want to listen and kept doing his own thing despite our efforts to reign him in. Ian had told him to not throw things in the house…and guess what? A stuffed toy was thrown and a crash was heard. My aloe plant had just lost a round of tackle football with the plush banana.
We, of coarse, were on our way our the door at the time and this only added to the frustration of his disobedience and the mess we would now have to clean up. As Ian talked with Seth, he informed him that we would need to say sorry to “mommy for breaking her plant.” Then the real battle begin.
Seth is probably one of the most stubborn kids I know. Once he sets his mind against something, we have the most difficult time changing it. I know God can use this strong will for good and for His glory, but right now, it just makes training and teaching him so extremely challenging.
Seth decided he did not want to say sorry. He decided he wanted to cry and scream. So like any self-respecting toddler, he did. He continued to do so until it was past the time we were suppose to be leaving. Finally, in order to just smooth over the situation, I took him in my arms and let him hug me for an apology.
This felt like another failure. I felt like he had won again. He didn’t “say” sorry.
Then about a day or two later, as we were driving home from errands a little voice in the back of the car said, “sorry Mommy I broke your plant.” Heart melt.
Just when I thought he didn’t listen, didn’t care and we were getting no where in teaching him, a moment like that was just what I needed. He is learning. Slowly, yes. But that’s where we just have to consistently train, model and love this strong willed son that God has given us. On days when I feel like I’m making no difference what-so-ever, I have to hold on to the little glimpses of encouragement: a toy shared, a cup put in the sink instead of thrown to the floor, a sweet, out-of-the-blue “sorry.”