Whenever I see toddlers with a parent, I get this overwhelming feeling of joy, and I am quickly reminded of what a gift it is to be a parent. I have a two-year-old son and a four-year-old daughter, and it is thrilling to watch them develop. As they learn, I learn from them, in turn. The lessons they teach me arrive on a daily basis, moment to moment and often not in words, but in their mannerisms and interactions. They are sometimes humorous, other times cringe-inducing, but always enlightening. I’d like to share another one with you today. (Full Series)
They are teaching me to be patient, and to say, “it is okay.”
I’ve learned to not worry so much about making sure every room in the house is tidy. Every room does not need to be cleaned up all the time. If I suggest to them to clean up, they say, “Dad, in a few moments, we are busy, or you can do it.” There is this old saying that if you want something done right, then you should do it yourself. So I sometimes take them up on it. Well, I must say I have gotten better at patience, letting them finish their current task and being okay that the house will not fall apart. Then we get a chance to sing The Clean Up Song together: “clean up, clean up, let’s all clean up.”
As you can imagine, things do not stay clean for long. Before I know it, my work station is once again covered in dolls, and I am basically locked into my seat, knowing that, should I attempt to get up, I will have to navigate a minefield of said dolls. I must say this doll entrapment has had a positive effect on my patience as well as my work, for I find it has lowered my distractions and I do not get up from my desk as often to avoid stepping on the dolls. It has also taught me that the distractions can wait and the kids get to do what kids do, which is to take over the house, claiming every room as a play room.
If, like me, you look for and appreciate the lessons we can learn from everyday life, I’d like to recommend my book, Thank You! With Deepest Gratitude. In it, I share many more stories and observations from my ongoing search for a life of gratitude.