Saturday, April 25, 2009

Learning lessons

Did you know that other moms have bad days, too? I would like to thank my neighbor for reminding me of this important lesson. As we watched our kids play in the backyard, she told me about all the ways her bad day went to worse with every turn. I tried to fill myself with empathy for all her misfortune, but instead I was laughing inside and feeling quite thankful for my neighbor and friend.

Later that evening, after the kids were in bed, I knocked on her front door carrying two bowls of ice cream. One bowl for her to wash away her bad day; one bowl for me to celebrate friendship.

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Yesterday, I tried reasoning with my three-year-old.

"If you made the mess, you must clean it up."

"If you don't eat your breakfast, you can't have a snack."

"If you don't take your nap, you won't be able to watch TV."

Simple reason and simple consequence, right? Not exactly.

The light bulb went on for me last night as she was taking her bath. She offered me some "tea" she had just made with the bath water. I politely said, "No thank, you." And she said, "I'll drink it."

She still drinks bath water. How can I possibly reason with that?

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