....things were a little better with my little man. If you read the preceding post, you know that we have had some rough times lately and over the course of our almost five years together...but today was an example of how things could be if I am willing to be less selfish, to put aside my to-do list and focus on this darling child God has given me.
As I cried and prayed my way home last night, after the horrible day I had with the little one, I felt like I really needed to focus more on what he was asking for and what he was needing (despite the way he was asking). He is only five, though he seems much older because of his mouth. But I realized that most of what I hear out of his mouth in both tone and words are things I have said, verbatim. Seems like that puts it all on me.
So last night, I stayed up and created a weekly calendar for him. In orange it has all the things that he has to do by himself, in blue, things he needs to know are coming (like showers), in green FOOD!! On the reverse side, we have consequences for his behaviors, and I kept it very simple, only three things we are working on...arguing, being disrespectful and hitting.
I also talked to him about the 'angry bees' in his tummy, and how they make him do things that he does not want to do. We came up with three things that he can do to help the bees be calm 1) sit with Mommy 2) hug Mommy 3) lie down in his bed with his blanket for 5 minutes. I explained it all to him this morning and he has referred to that "tayendar" all day long. To me, it is silly, to him, as my friend Lisa commented, the "knowledge is power".
And here is the amazing thing...no timeouts today - not one! And this for a kid who is in timeout a lot! Every time he headed in a direction that was not going to end well, I would talk to him about what was going on in his tummy and we would follow 1..2..3...to get the bees to quiet down.
Was it a perfect day - absolutely NOT! Was it a better day for he and I than we have had in months? YES!!! Without a doubt. He even happily went to bed 30 minutes before the other kids, after he got ready for bed with no fussing and he and I read a story together. Bedtime has always been bad for us, but tonight, I got a glimpse of what it could be like.
I read an article today by Sally Clarkson. She is someone who I really look up to as the kind of mom I want to be. She admits she is not perfect, that she has made lots of mistakes too, but the fact is, she loves her kids and she keeps trying. You can read it for yourself here: http://www.itakejoy.com/discipleship-relationships-take-a-lot-of-time/ I would love to know what you think!