So, today was ok. Not extravagant and wonderful like yesterday, but definitely better than the trend had been going. My son Luke seemed determined to push every one of my buttons to see if I would lose it - and he was almost successful...almost.
He woke up this morning and his first action was pushing Emma over after she told him she wouldn't share her apple juice. I made him go back to his room, get back in his bed, close his eyes and decide to wake up happy and kind. It worked for awhile surprisingly enough.
He ran off down the street with my two year old to visit their great grandma for candy. Emma decided to just nicely get in the car and choose wisely. She was rewarded with the candy while the other two sat and watched painfully as she enjoyed the candy more than she probably ever has.
When he yanked a toy out of Lily's (my two year old) hands and I told him to go sit on the naughty step (which may I add has never had any impact on him whatsoever but yet I cling to it as a reasonable means of discipline)he told me that I could go sit on the naughty step and a few other teenage-like attitude comments. Instead of talking to him or correcting him, I took his prized train away from him. He threw himself on the floor and cried hysterically for fifteen minutes until he came to me and told me he was sorry for being "disespecful" (disrespectful) and rude.
After Cubbies tonight he was hungry and got angry with me when I told him I would not allow him to plug in the mixer because, contrary to what he may think, food would not magically come out of it. He started jumping up and down telling me he was frustrated and disappointed. I quietly offered him a pear, some celery or a carrot. He stopped, looking defeated, and settle for the pear.
There are days like today when I feel like it's of no consequence, that I am of no consequence. I cook, I clean, I pick up after everyone, I bathe them, I dress them, and put them to bed and tomorrow it all begins again. And, this afternoon, God spoke loud and clear to me through Luke of all people.
Dave (my husband) picked up three Bob the Builder plush toys for the kids from work today. Of course, Luke was so excited that he wanted to pull the cloth hammer out of Bob's tool belt and it ripped off and now is in need of repair. He wanted it fixed immediately, but with my nightly routine it just wasn't going to happen. So, I offered him one of the other ones since the girls really didn't care all too much about Bob. But he grabbed his ripped Bob the Builder and held it close to his chest and said, "No! This one is mine." As soon as those words came out of his mouth I heard it loud and clear what God was trying to teach me in that moment.
I matter. In my day to day grind, in my what often seems monotonous routine, I matter. When I mess up, I matter. I'm trying to be better. I'm trying to be fruitful and walk in the path of righteousness, but it's hard. And sometimes, a lot of times, I just plain fall short. And yet in those moments, God grabs me up and says, "You're mine." What a great relief to know that He loves me regardless of my less than stellar moments as a mommy, wife, human.
So here's to tomorrow - focusing on those patience and slow to anger characteristics. But tomorrow I will keep this on the forefront of my mind: As I am trying to cultivate patience and being slow to anger in my own life, these are attributes God already has down...and He is forever patient and slow to anger with me. And if He's patient with me I can be patient with my kiddos.