Guest Post by Susan B.
I have a skinny mirror. You know the kind – it makes you look skinny. When you look in it, your outfit is always flattering and you just generally look amazing.
A skinny mirror is a rare and precious commodity. If you find one, hang on to it!!
Of course, there are some (eh hem) not-so-skinny mirrors in my life. The fitting rooms at Express, for example, seem to specialize in making me look disgusting. As a result, I don’t shop there. Well, that and their tops are cut for super models. But I’m blaming it largely on the mirror thing.
Back to the actual message here…
When it comes to raising children, we have a choice to look in the proverbial skinny mirror; or the not-so-skinny mirror. I’m not talking about body-image, though I’m sure we all have a long list of things we want to change about our bodies. I’m talking about how we choose to look at the situation. Do we simply rush to the next activity, boiling with frustration that our kids will not hurry up already? Or, do we take the time to appreciate the moment with our child?
Let me be specific.
- Up all night with a fussy baby who will. not. sleep. – Exhausting? Or, a special time for you to connect with your babe?
- Digging up worms in the back yard. – Disgusting? Or, the perfect picture of discovering creation?
- Carrying your screaming child out of a play area. – Embarrassing? Or, an opportunity to display the peace and patience of a loving parent?
- Hysterical fit because her tights got snagged right before dance class. – Irritating? Or, a time to discuss how things in life are not always perfect; and that’s okay?
This list could be a mile long; these are merely the situations I have already encountered this morning.
My point is this: In every situation, we have the opportunity to look in the skinny mirror, take a deep breath of confidence and feel awesome about how we respond.
Or, we can go the other way. Trust me, I go “the other way” a lot. Like, a lot a lot. So I know it is difficult to always be patient and positive and loving.
But, when I can muster up the energy to sing one more verse of the Hokey Pokey while I dress my toddler again, I feel my frustrations lift. And I realize – hey, this is what being a parent is all about. This is what I signed up for, and I want to do it with all my heart.
That conscious decision to be the best parent I can be helps me find myself in the best skinny mirror on earth.
Susan is a married mother of two girls, ages 3 years and 22 months. She works with the childcare ministry at Church of the Resurection, where she also participates in an amazing mom’s group. Susan is Mary’s sister and very close friend. Although Susan regularly contributes to Lemon Water through her support and advice, this is her first time writing a guest post. She is the funniest and kindest person you’ll ever have the pleasure of knowing.