I had a nice moment yesterday sitting in the small shade of a tree that’s just starting to fill in and watching my kids – even my oldest kids riding around the green space over and over. They were happy. My friend/neighbor came over and sat with me and we visited. All of this only got better when my nearly 10 year old son, Max, came over and sat down too, right next to me. He rested his red head on my shoulder for a long time then went and played again.
The day didn’t stay in that moment. It got busier with must do’s like grocery shopping because we were out of the basics, dumping soup into mugs to eat on the go, and shuffling kids to football practice because it’s what they’ve always wanted to do.
Returning from errands I walked in the house and immediately grumbled inside at the messy kitchen. And, the nerve, there was my Max on the computer. His job was to do the dishes. The dishwasher was running, barely full, and dishes were scattered all over the counters. I vocalized. I Articulated. And I made good and sure he knew he should have looked around and been more helpful.
Thankfully the strange satisfaction of release was interrupted with the image of earlier when Max tenderly rested his head on my shoulder. Heavenly Father helped me remember that. I contrasted that image to his down-cast eyes and splotchy trying-not-to-cry sweet face. The look on his face was not of complete love and trust anymore.
I didn’t want to crush my relationship with Max over a few dirty dishes. I apologized and hugged my Max. It wasn’t about the dishes or whose job it was to do them. It was about me being patient and teaching and loving him even in a tired mess. I feel like we are all homeschoolers, all of us learning at home, especially me.
P.S. I run to give me an edge on handling the day. Today I found it appropriate to listen to a talk about the way we speak. The Tongue of Angels by Elder Holland It was so good and I had opportunities to practice it throughout the day 😉
P.P.S that isn’t a picture of Max. It was just a stock picture..