Monday, September 17, 2007

a good idea, repeated

I am repeating myself in this post to emphasis a great point, one that -again- I can't claim as my own.

A young mom in our ward found herself in the same situation we all do, frustrated and wondering how her child made it through the day in one piece. She confided over the pulpit that she had made the mistake of putting her child to bed in anger. She tucked her little one into bed with a laundry list of his wrong doings and turned out the light in a huff.

Half way down the hall she heard his tiny voice calling, "Mommy, what about the rights?" In confusion she turned back and asked him to explain. "What rights? What are you talking about?" Her little boy replied that she had told him all the things he did wrong, would she tell him the all the things he did right before he went to sleep?

At this point, her eyes filled with tears and she realized she had sent her child to bed without knowing any of the good things he had accomplished that day. He felt like a failure in his mommy's eyes, unsure of his place, unsure that he was loved. I fear that we all have been in that same position some time during our mothering careers.

I was very humbled to hear this story, feeling my own guilt and wanting to be better. Isn't this a grand idea? She repented right then and there and decided that every night he would be tucked into bed, no matter the prior experiences of the day, with a laundry list of things done right. She admits that the list can be difficult to fill some days, "You were the very best at breathing today!" "You kept your shoes on all the way through lunch!" and other such good deeds. The thing is, he went to bed feeling loved by his mommy.

I don't believe we need to coddle our children, to let them win each time, to take them to every event they are invited to or make sure their life is fair in every way. They need to learn and experience life. However, they should always feel safe when they lie down at night. They should always feel love before they go to sleep.

add to sk*rt


The Pea said...

I am so in love with this right now, I am doing my FHE lesson tongiht and starting our own family chart tomarrow. However i have already been doing the Five rights at bedtime. I will tell you we all have slept much better when we go away form each other on a good note.

Sarah said...

My two year old and I have been having a tough time lately with potty training and stubbornness. I've had to take extra care at bedtime to have it be a happy time where she can feel my total love. For the past few months I've started telling her all the reasons I love her at bedtime. She just loves it and is always happy to snuggle in bed with me at the end of the day for her personal love-fest. The days are tough, but the nights are sweet as pie!

It doesn't take much to let our little ones know we love them. Thanks for this post!

chronicler said...

It is the example of our Father. When we do wrong things, make poor choices, does He turn his back on us? No. Actually He asks us to come to Him. To confess our wrong doings and then He wipes the slate clean. Far better than we can do ourselves. If we as parents could keep that in mind, instead of shunning our children when they're bad, life would be better for all.

s'mee said...

Thanks everyone for you your comments...i live for them! I am glad that there many of us that made this change. I think it really did/does help the tone in the family.

melissa c said...

This brought tears to my eyes. I really feel this post.

Many times I have put a child to bed and stalked out. It always made me feel like a failure.

I think I will take this one to heart. Thank you for posting it.

ERIN said...

I found your blog through the Penders (Lauren is my little sis).
Thanks for sharing that story. Made me cry. It is a reminder that we all need to hear time to time.
I have skimmed over your most recent posts and I love the ideas you have for the family chart. You seem like a good resource.

s'mee said...

Melissa, this is why I am posting this the way I have... I think we ALL (if we're honest) have done this very thing and felt exactly as you describe. But isn't it great that we have a new day to make a solid change? Thanks so much for writing.

Erin! Welcome! I recieve comments through my e-mail before they come here and I recognised your name right away! I am way excited to have you here. Thanks so much for your kind words! Now go nudge your sis and tell her I say "hey" and send my love to the both of them!!!

Sally said...

Sorry I am so behind on my stalking. Cool posts as of late! I do try to tell my ladies their "good choices" for the day, but sometimes they're things they would have done. For example, "You shared with Grace." "No I didn't!" "Well, you meant to. I know you will next time." How sneaky. ;)