There are times when we need to get “grown up” things done, and the timing is completely unacceptable to my youngest one. He can throw a tantrum with the worst of them, and he can apologize with the best of them. But when I’ve put my patient, tolerant, understanding, compassionate, unscheduled mom hat on, the grown up things that need to get done, can become an opportunity to spend time together – both getting things done.
Whether it’s cooking, cleaning, grocery shopping, shoveling snow, or mowing the lawn, our smallest family member is all in, all the time. He is all about growing up yesterday (unless it has to do with potty training, in which case he reminds me that “big kids potty in the potty and I no big kid; I baby.”).
It may take longer to do everything, and there may be a half dozen more messes to clean up after, but there are important lessons in these moments as well – for both of us. So often, I find myself hurrying, always feeling like there’s not enough time to get everything done. I really deplore that feeling, and have come to realize that I may be imposing these demands on my self. Even when my toddler joins me in the business of running a family, I find that the things that must get done still get done. On schedule.
So, here’s to making more messes, involving my kids, and letting go of my self-imposed time limits that are a drain on my energy and all of our happiness. Thanks to my toddler for reminding me about what’s most important.