The combination of living out of 500 square feet and adventuring around a new city with my three daughters means our quantity and quality family hours logged are off the charts. Are you reading between the lines? There should be awards for this level of family-ing. We’re unavoidably facing each other’s shortcomings and longcomings (whatever those are. I’m sure we’ve dealt with them this week). Feel free to not quote me on these mom-isms…
“You can get mad but then you just have to be mad right here with us.” (daydreaming of our 3 level house in these moments)
“You’ll know when we’re there when we get there.”
“If you verbally beat down your sisters then you’ll be dealing with verbally beat down sisters.”
“Stop touching ALL the food.” (hotel breakfast day 11)
“Nope, I’m not ready to go yet.” (1 bathroom)
“Fruit Loops don’t actually count as a fruit….or breakfast” (trying not to be ‘that mom’ but totally being ‘that mom’)
Reality is our days can get derailed faster than the Vancouver SkyTrain by poor attitudes (mine included), shortsighted perspectives (mostly mine) and careless words (sometimes mine too). When it happens we have to work together to turn things back around or we’re all miserable. Together. It’s not unique to our current life stage. Wrecked plans and hurt feelings happened back at home too, but here I’m facing them with fewer distractions, a wide open calendar, new clarity and necessity for quick resolution and restoration. Here’s 3.5 ways to get your day and attitudes back on track…
1. The 20 Second Hug. Don’t underestimate the importance of the full 20 seconds. Try it. Melting begins around second 12. If you give up after 18 seconds you’ll never realize the power (props for this tactic go to my bro and sis-n-law).
2. Read aloud. It’s magical. Read aloud for good times and bad. Don’t leave home without your book because it works on the road too. Win-win (three pages for complaining before anyone exits the car). Someone’s going to email me and suggest I may be ruining reading for my kids. There’s no way to ruin ‘Love, Ruby Lavender’, promise.
3. Last but not at all least, apologize, forgive and move on. Quickly. Move on, Mom. Get over yourself (pardon me while I preach to myself).
Nothing magical, but just a few lessons learned-ing. No matter where we go, there we are, and a change of scenery doesn’t change our hearts. God does. I’m thankful He’s handed me this magnifying glass on our hearts for this season. We’re dealing and He’s healing.
Wait. Where’s the 1/2 to my 3 1/2? It was the God part. It’s only a 1/2 because I don’t know how to make it an exponent on the keyboard 😉 God changes hearts. Talk to Him in the unraveling moments and ask Him to deal with the unseen brokenness like only He can do, and be willing to follow His abounding grace.