If you have kids, or are close to kids, then you know that they say the most amazing things all the times. Sometimes though what they say is particularly awesome; so awesome in fact that you think about the child and the words all week, tell everyone you know, and want to make sure that there isn’t a person you haven’t told of the awesomeness that is this child. This week, I’ve had a couple of those moments. (I have 5 kids, I’m bound to have multiple awesome things, right? It’s something like the law of probabilities, I think. I’m not really sure as I don’t do “math”).
|She loves “Hims”, she just can’t
remember His name.
Last Sunday, as we were trying to get out of bed, my four year old came into my room and started his usual Sunday morning rant. You see, while we don’t generally have any issues with letting the kids watch TV, we have this rule, about Sunday mornings. Simply stated: no TV. It’s not a religious thing; I just hate being late for Mass, especially for no good reason. To me, watching TV is not a good reason. So little man and I go through this every week. He rants at me that he just has to watch TV, that I’m a mean mommy for not letting him, that he isn’t going to Mass (because apparently he thinks we leave four year olds home unattended?), that I have to let him watch something. I respond with a string of “no”, “I don’t care”, “there you go again, mistaking me for somebody who gives a damn”, etc. The usual. This week, however, I had some help in the rant response department, and it came from an unlikely source: my two year old daughter. Now, granted, she’ll be three in April, and granted, we try to expose our children to as much of our Faith and beliefs as they can handle, but I still was not expecting this exchange:
Her: “Mom, what’s Hims name?”, as she pointed at the crucifix on my wall.
Me: “Hims name is Jesus, baby.”
Her: “Mom, Hims have lots of boo boos? Jesus?”
Me: “Yes, baby. ‘Hims’ have lots of boo boos.”
Her: “Yansom, Hims, Jesus (again, pointing), have lots of boo boos. We needs to go to Mass to make Hims boo boos feel all better. Yeah, we do. We needs to go to church.”
I personally think that’s a pretty good lesson on theology from a two year old, even if she is almost three. We do go to Mass partly because in praying and uniting our sacrifice with His, we are striving to alleviate His suffering. It was definitely a moment of feeling, “At least I must be doing something right.”
If I’m doing something right in the theology department then I’m not sure what I’m doing in the math department. My six year old son told me he was being facetious the other day. We finished part of our math lesson and I told him we only had one more page left. He responded with, “Oh fun.” I apparently mistook his meaning, because, when I said that I was happy because he really does seem to enjoy this part of math, he stopped me to make sure I understood what he was trying to say. “Mom, I was being facetious. I didn’t say, ‘Oh! Fun!’ like I was excited. I said, ‘Oh, fun.’ I was saying the exact opposite of the words I was using. I was being facetious.” Should I be upset that he doesn’t enjoy math as much as I thought, or excited that my six year old is correctly using the word facetious (one I find far too many adults confusing with sarcastic)? I’m not really sure here, but I’m going to go with the excited response. He might not love math but, clearly, his vocabulary skills are not lacking.
|He certainly looks like he’s enjoying his math.|
The way I see it is this: we only have them for so long while they are actually “ours”, to mold, to teach, to impress upon with our beliefs and quirks, our tastes and spirit. I’m going to choose to see both of these as successes in the parenting collumn, partly because they aren’t as common as I’d like, but mainly because, childhood is too short to be beating ourselves up looking at the down side. My children are learning. The little girl may not remember that “Hims” name is Jesus, but she certainly knows what is what in the theology department. The big boy may not love math, but he can correctly use a word that gives some adults pause. To me, those should be celebrated now. We can sort out the bad bits later and fix them up then.
So now I want to know: do you celebrate the small things or sweat them? What’s your parenting style in these situations?