Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Love Is All You Need

There are many days when I question my parenting skills. Wondering if what I am teaching my children is sinking in. My biggest concern is are my children learning the most important lesson of compassion and love, and especially for each other? Then the Lord has His way of answering me and I am comforted by these glimmers of hope. A few of these tender mercies happened even this past week. They're small but big enough to remind me that I am doing something (even if it's just a smidgen) right. The first stories happened between Beck and Kate. I had asked Beck to do me a favor. I kindly asked, "Beck will you do me a favor and help me with something?" I gave no explanation as to what I needed him to do and I was hoping that he would just say yes, but he actually said no. So I asked Kate the same question and she willingly said yes. After she had picked up the bowls and lids that Sara had thrown on the floor because the child lock was not on the cabinet, I praised her and offered her a piece of gum. (Gum is a huge incentive in our home.) When Beck heard that she got rewarded for her willingness to help, he got upset and told me that had he known gum was involved he would have said yes. I told him that we should do things because we want to help, not because there is a reward. He stormed off crying stating that it wasn't fair. Kate was obviously pleased and couldn't wait until I gave her the gum. While I was handing it to her she said with a smile, "Can I actually have 2 pieces?" I was happy to give her 2 and soon after she walked into the room where Beck was sitting, still crying, and gave him her 2nd piece of gum. Then a couple of days later I looked out the window to check on the kids and I see Beck helping Kate tie the sash to her dress that had become untied.

The next story involved Cole and Beck. Back in February Cole got tickets for his birthday to see OneRepublic in concert. We had purchased 4 lawn seat tickets so told Cole that he could invite anyone he wanted to. He had a few friends in mind but hadn't made any decisions. The concert was fast approaching and I had asked Cole on several occasions if he had decided who he was going to take. Finally with only a few days left I asked him again and to my surprise he said "Beck". As you can imagine Beck was thrilled and on Saturday, Mark and I and Cole and Beck went to see OneRepublic in concert along with American Authors and The Script. It was a great concert, great night, great fun!! ( I kept asking Beck if he was enjoying his first concert and he kept reminding me that this wasn't his first, WWE Raw was. In fact he said he liked watching wrestling more than the concert.) (Cole reminded me that this was his third concert. The Wiggles was his first and then Bruno Mars.)

The last stories involve Liam and Sara. Ever since we brought Sara home, Liam has had typical sibling rivalry issues with her. He didn't watch my belly grow or have time to prepare for a new baby. And he was too young to understand that we were adopting. All he knew was one day he was the baby one day he wasn't. Some little girl just showed up and rocked his world. I am constantly telling him "Just let her be!" "Just leave her alone!" He seriously cannot handle when anyone takes notice of Sara or holds her. If she is crying because of him, he is right there pretending to cry to and asking me to "Hold you." He gets jealous of her and is always stealing her thunder. Now with that said, I have witnessed moments of him loving her so I know he does, and this past week he showed me again. Sara was trying really hard to get on the trampoline using the stool below her, but kept falling because she had the stool too close. I waited to see if she would figure it out and move it further away. In the meantime Liam, who was already jumping, came to her aide and tried to pull her onto the tramp. He got off to help her with the stool but by then, she had already figured it out. But at least he made the effort. Then the other night Liam brought me an ice cream bar so I could unwrap it for him. Of course after seeing he had one Sara wanted one too. I had just cleaned her and her chair up from dinner and did not want another sticky chocolate mess to clean up so I told her no. Liam didn't like to see Sara upset so he went to the freezer and got one for her. He handed it to me and said "Sara want ice cream." How could I resist, so they both enjoyed their ice cream bars together. And then just tonight, they were both sitting on one of our recliners watching the iPad. Liam was actually letting her watch it which is rare, he usually turns it away, and then all of the sudden he puts his arm around her neck and gives her a kiss and she kisses him back. (Open mouth of course, but we wouldn't expect anything less from Sara.)

So you see these small but mighty mercies showed me that my kids do love each other and they do care. Kate was able to cheer her brother up by sharing a piece of gum that she had earned. Beck stopped rollerblading for a moment to help Kate with her dress. Cole chose his little brother to go with him to the concert instead of a friend. Liam saw Sara struggling and helped her on the trampoline, he was empathetic and wanted her to enjoy an ice cream bar too, then sealed his love with a kiss. 

We may not be perfect but we have perfect moments of love!! And just like the wind, these perfect moments carry me through each season of my life. These perfect moments let me know that my children are going to be alright. My children are loved and they do love one another and love is all you need!

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