They’re Actually Listening

Parenting small kids often makes you feel like you’re talking to a brick wall. My kid can look me right in my face while I’m telling him about some corrections he needs to make to his behavior, and not have a clue about what I’ve said 30 seconds later. NOT because he didn’t understand, simply because he was not listening. Staring right at my mouth and not listening at all. It can be pretty frustrating. Thankfully, some bright moments shine through the mom-fog to remind you that the repetition does, in fact, make a difference.

The other day, my two-year-old (almost three) got his finger caught in a toy. Its a transforming toy that changes from a robot into an airplane and his finger got stuck in one of the hinge areas. He couldn’t figure out how to get it out, and that plus the pain really upset him. He was crying so loudly that everyone came to see what happened if he was okay. My four-year-old, who is pretty emotional and empathetic, started to cry as well. I told him his little brother would be okay and asked him to stop crying . . . so I could think and tend to the younger one. It was one of those intense mom moments with more noise than anyone really wants to be surrounded by.  Just when I felt my eyes begin to roll, my four year old said softly, “Can we pray?” My husband and I had been telling him that praying will help when you’re in trouble, mainly because he’d been having some unpleasant behavior at school. It hadn’t seemed like he’d been listening much. For him to have the presence of mind to consider prayer – when even I was letting my emotions and attitude run the show – was humbling and sweet. I was proud off him, and made sure to tell him that later after all the commotion was over.

I’ll have to admit, I was a bit proud of myself as well. For sticking with the positive messages and giving him life lessons even when it seemed like he was just staring at me hoping my mouth would stop moving soon. Turns out, some of that was actually getting through. Thankfully.

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