Momma, this morning I just wanted to show you what I made out of Legos. But you stopped me before I could and told me to take them back downstairs because I know I'm not supposed to play with them in the mornings. But I usually forget that. Because they're awesome and I love them. And, besides, I really wanted to finish this cool creation. But, I did what you wanted and took them back downstairs. Without mouthing back at you, I might add. But I got distracted when I was down there and next thing I knew, you were yelling at me to come back up to your room. And you didn't sound very happy with me.
On my way back to your room, E ran by, waving one of my drawings at me, laughing manically, taunting me. I had to get it back - right.then - because he sometimes cuts up my art stuff that I've worked so hard on. But he didn't listen when I told him to stop so I had to yell at him. He was waving it in my face on purpose and I tried to grab it. He was running down the hall when I got ahold of him and he fell down. I was so relieved to get my drawing back that I didn't even notice that he was upset. Until you stuck your head out it the hallway and demanded to know what happened.
Right away you picked up E and hugged him. But you wouldn't listen to me. I just wanted to tell you what happened. I mean, couldn't you see, he did this to himself! I just wanted my drawing back. That's it! But now I'm in trouble! It doesn't make any sense. And you're using so many words and I just want you to hear me that he was going to destroy my stuff!! Again. Because he does it all. the. time. Why won't you listen to me?! And you wonder why I don't want to tell you things sometimes. It's because you only want me to talk, well, when you want me to talk. Not when I want - or need - to talk.
You wonder why I'm sometimes sullen. Well, it's because I don't feel like I'm heard. My Legos, my drawings, you may not feel like they're all that important, but they are to me. When I yell at you, I'm trying to explain my side of it, before you start in on me. I just want to be heard. It's really not too much to ask.
Today's Lesson: There are times, as a parent, when I don't have time to listen. Or at least my perception is that I don't have time. There are times, as a parent, when I don't think the things my child is upset about are important. But my child certainly thinks they are important. There are times, as a parent, that I need to stop, slow down, shut up, and let him have his say. Because the 2-3 extra minutes this takes, will save us time later. Because my child will feel heard... listened to... important... he will know, by my actions, that he is important to me... that he is loved... that he is my priority. There are some mornings when I just need this reminder. Before the chaos starts.