“What are you doing?” I asked my 5 year old. You see, he had tissue stuck up his nose. “I'm putting tissue in my nose like Dad does when he has a bloody nose”. Ah, that makes sense.
We know that our children pick up on the little things we do. If you don't know this, listen really carefully as you talk, you'll hear your parents. I called my Mom the other day and told her to “get out of my mouth”. She laughed and knew exactly what I was talking about. It has happened to her also. It happens to the best of us.
While a lot of the time I don't mind sounding like my Mom, there are times when I hear things she said to me that I didn't love. Things that may have been hurtful. When those things come out of my mouth I immediately want to reach out and grab those words and stuff them back. We can't do that though. So I try harder to not say those things again.
Not only do I not want to hurt my children, I don't want them to say those things to each other or to their children someday. I want the cycle to end with me.
So, I ask you, what are you doing that you see your children doing? Is it sticking tissue in your nose to stop a bloody nose? Is it a phrase you use quite often? Are they copying your mannerisms? It's fun to watch to see how they are unconsciously imitating you.
What I notice most is when they say things that I have been known to come out of my mouth. I hear my children say, “What part of that don't you understand??” or “I don't want to tell you again”. I have even heard them say, “I am getting so tired of this”. Ouch. But, I also hear them say, “I love you so much” or “That was SO great! Good Job!”.
If I am going to take credit for the bad, that means I can also take credit for the good. Thank heavens for that.
So today I make a conscious effort to do and say things that I don't mind my kiddos doing. They have both been known to throw around a curse word here and there, something I am trying to be more aware of. I know that someday they will call and tell me to get out of their mouths. I just hope that when they do, they will be proud to be sounding like me.