I recently read an article that talked about having/making your children say 'please' and 'thank you'. A woman was struggling because she didn't 'force' her children to say thank you. She gave them the opportunity to and if they didn't right away, she would take the time to explain why they should ('Wow.. That was really nice of Billy to share that toy with you. Doesn't that feel good when someone shares? Doesn't that make you happy.') say thank you and then she would drop it. After reading that article I was at a crossroads.. Should I continue to 'make' Parker use his manners, or should I change my approach? I decided to stick with the path that I was on. I read the article again and it seemed like the author's children were older and I felt that Parker could still use direction under that matter. However, I decided to start explaining 'why' he has to say 'please' and 'thank you' every time.
Needless to say, I am so glad that I stuck with it.. Not only does he say it on his own sometimes, but I knew I did the right thing when we were getting in to the car one day after Sam's Club and Parker asked me to hand him his toy motorcycle. I did and was just about to shut the door when he said, 'Thank you, Mommy. Parker happy.' It was like those little words opened a flood gate of emotions. I was so proud of not only him, but of myself. People without children may not understand how something so little, can be so big to parents. All I can really say is that I was one. proud. mama.
I was given probably one of the best compliments I have ever received.. A complete stranger walked up to me, in the middle of a carnival, and said, 'You make having two children look easy.' I replied with a typical eyeroll and 'thanks'. All I could think is, 'Is this woman blind, deaf or just crazy?' Little does she know I often feel like screaming, ripping my hair out and locking myself in a closet (I told her about my blog, so maybe she will be figuring that out soon if she decides to check it out)... Anyways.. That compliment got me thinking... The 'ease' that I have had with parenting is not only a compliment to me, but also to the boys, Ben and our ability to all work together. I am just thankful that I recognized that fact early. Lately I have been trying to vocalize thanks and compliments when/where they're due (because who doesn't like to hear that they're doing something awesome) and I have also been trying to accept compliments a lot better (I obviously need more work.. Read the first few sentences of this paragraph). I am trying to train myself that I am worthy of hearing that I do something good... Just look at my beautiful little men...
This whole mommyhood thing has definately been an 'on the job' training course, but I like to think that I am doing a pretty good job. It has been so rewarding to see how much the boys have learned (thanks to me or the situations I put them in) and it is so exciting to see their personalities and love for each other show. We are talking about having them share a room in a year or so and I can just imagine the giggles, fond memories (and of course fights) that they will share while they're in there. If these last few months are any indication of how it will be... I am very excited! They both love each other SO much and I am so thankful that we have all 'fallen' into our places. Parker is the boasting big brother, always looking out for little man (side story.. Parker was playing in the playroom with his weed whip and he either scared Preston or hurt him. Well, Preston started crying and before I could walk in there, Parker turned off the toy and said, 'I'm sorry Preston. No cry.' Seriously.. He's two.. Is that normal.. Either way.. It's awesome!), Preston is the giggly little boy who is in constant awe of his big brother and I am the mama bear that is always here to teach and protect them. Ahhh.. It's just too awesome for words how I feel right now.
As always, I am excited to see what our future will bring for us!