If you follow me on facebook, you know that my kids say some pretty hilarious things; and, ask me some off the wall questions. There are many times, when they leave me, yes, even me, speechless. Let me give you a list of my all time favorites.
1. "There are all types of mom's in this world. Mom's that cook, Mom's that clean, and then, there's you. Zachary
2. "Mama, would you like it if you were really skinny and pretty?" Mallory
3. "Mama, sometimes I think it may would like it if you went on a vacation." Zachary
4. "Sometimes when I go to my friends houses I wonder why their house is so clean." Zachary
5. "Mama, when im 80, will you still be my mama?" Mallory
6. "When I'm all grown up and have my own kids and wife, will you live with me, or will you live in the cemetary?" Zachary
7. Are there some days that you want to give daddy back to paw paw and grammy?" Mallory
You get the point. Kids are funny. They are honest. They are sincere in what they say, even if it comes out with a bit of a sting...(see number 2).
But what I love most about kids, especially mine, is that they say what they feel and they ask questions with no abandon. How many times have you felt like you were confused about something, not sure, unaware; but, you just didn't want to, feel like, or have time to ask for clarification? Kids get it clarified. They want to know. You can be honest with them.
I remember one weekend we were visiting our Aunt Marlene and Uncle Bob. Zachary and Uncle Bob are big buddies, and some months prior to our visit, Bob's dad had passed away. As Zachary and Bob hung around the house, I heard Zach say "Who's that Uncle Bob?" as he pointed to a picture of Bob's mom and dad. I cringed at what Uncle Bob would say... how would he answer this delicately to my then 5 year old? Would this turn into a deep discussion of life and death and heaven and Jesus? He had to answer perfectly. He had to be sensitive yet, forthcoming. Was I thinking to much, was Bob thinking at all? My mind, as a mom was going a mile a minute. Bob just simply said: "Thats my dad!" Zach, seeing a strange look on Bob's face, said: "Whats wrong?" (cut to me still freaking out) Bob simply said "He died and I miss him." "Here it comes," I thought...i'm not prepared...how will I answer his questions, what will I say? But Zach just said "Oh, I'm sorry. You have me. Lets go ride the tractor" Bob just smiled and took his little hand and off they went.
I think about that story alot, because as parents we sometimes tend to get really bogged down in making sure what we say is perfect, when deep down we know there are really no perfect answers. We want what we do to be perfect, when we know there is no such thing as human perfection. I think we worry about asking all the right questions, giving all the right answers, doing all the right things...
As parents we will worry. But maybe, if we must worry, we should worry about being a kind parent, a loving parent, a Christian example, a present parent. We should worry about being a parent that is willing to say honestly... "I'm doing the best I can."
Recently I was having one of "those" days, and I was in a generally just bad mood. While I do my best to never take bad moods out on my kids, we all know that kids can be stressful, and when they are fighting, yelling, or generally just acting rotten, it can make what was already a bad day simply unbearable. I finally looked at them both and said "Look, mama had a bad day. I'm tired. I'm sad. And I need to tell you something. You are making me feel terrible with your fighting. It is making me so upset, I think I may cry." Silence fell over their little faces and there were no words (which is a miracle). There was no back talk. (another miracle) At this point panic set in. I said to much. I went to far....but Zach said "Come on Mallory, let's go outside so I can yell at you without making mama cry." I guess, that's score one for honesty.
Like I said....doing the best I can....