When my son gets upset he yells “EVERY TIME!” Because “every time” he wants to do something brothers in the way, and “every time” he has to be the one to clean, “and every time” something goes wrong. So I’m asking him to change the words “every time” with the word “sometimes”. “Sometimes” isn’t yelled, and it’s not final, and it leaves room for success and failure so there is always a chance to improve.
He told me today that “sometimes” he has trouble listening, and he does things wrong. I hugged him and said great job saying “sometimes”. And you know what? Sometimes momma has trouble listening and does things wrong. “Really?” He asked? Yes. But that is how we learn. It’s okay to make mistakes, because it is only sometimes, and then we do better.
What shocked me most about this conversation was that his sometimes focused on him. I was trying to get him to stop yelling about his brother and suddenly he opened up on something that was bothering him personally. I could see stress lift off of his little shoulders and knew that some of that anger was directed internally. Something I never recognized in him before.
I need to learn from the example he showed today. Sometimes I too will struggle to listen, and I will do something wrong. But it is okay, because it is sometimes. So sometimes I will succeed, and that’s what makes the struggles worth it.