Wednesday, January 25, 2017

Great Mom

I had the rare opportunity to spend one on one time with my little girl and we decided to make the best of it. "Let's go on a walk, baby girl," I suggested.
"Okay! But I want to ride my bike. My tricycle, I mean. I want to ride my tricycle."
I grabbed it of the hook on the garage wall, buckled her little helmet and we were off.

It was picture perfect for at least two full minutes. The dog walked and sniffed while she rode proudly on her tricycle. "Look how fast I'm going, Mommy! I can do it by myself!" she yelled as she peddled like the wicked witch of the west. Before I could compliment her on her tremendous speed, she stopped to collect some acorns. A wave of nostalgia came over me as I remembered each of my boys riding this same bike and putting acorns in the little bucket on the back. She came over to hold my hand and said sweetly, "I'm going to run now. You can carry my bike home."

I suddenly remembered this from my boys' early biking days. I flashed to walks with that tricycle stuffed in the bottom of a baby stroller or drug behind me as the dog yanked me forward. I decided to learn from past mistakes. "If you rode it here, you have to ride it back babe. I'm walking Charlie."
She looked at my other hand pointedly. "But that hand is empty. You can just carry my bike, right?"
"No, I can't. You are welcome to run to that tree and back and then you have to ride your bike."
"Okay!" she said. I sighed, thankful that this strong willed girl had let it go so easily. But I relaxed too soon.

"I'm just going to run home now!" she said as she blew right past the agreed upon tree and down the sidewalk.
"Don't forget your bike!" I reminded her. At that, she collapsed in tears.

"I want to run! I don't want my bike! I want to run!" she wailed dramatically.
"I know you do, love. Seems like you are really frustrated so here are your choices. Either ride the bike back or push it while you run. Which would you rather do?" She sensed a bit of control blowing in her direction and the tears stopped like a switch had been flipped.

"Riding would be fun!" she said as she ran to the bike.
I took another deep breath, glad the drama was over for the moment when she stopped riding and took my hand once again. "You know," she said thoughtfully, "You are a really good mommy. The best."

I'm not sure if she was trying to make peace or if she suddenly was filled with love for me but I do know it felt really good to hear. This job can really wear a girl out. My kids throw me a new curve ball every day and I have to spend a lot of time trying to perfect my swing. How incredible to be handed a moment like that. Those simple words drained all the stress that had built up in that interaction and reminded me that along with those curve balls we are thrown little gifts every day. They may come in the form of an unexpected hug, a misspelled love note or a piece of lovingly made burnt toast but they are there. Today, look for the gifts that your kids throw you and savor them. They are truly gifts from God.

1 comment:

  1. It truly is the most difficult yet most rewarding job ever.


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