I began to cook dinner feeling a bit stressed. I was particularly discouraged with my kids who just didn’t seem to be getting the point with some bad habits we’ve been trying to make progress in. My boy had to come to the kitchen with one of his toy cars to drive it all around the counter, accompanied by loud sound effects. It was not the time for play according to my plan and schedule. I was cooking dinner and the kids were supposed to be doing their homework, cleaning their rooms, getting in pajamas etc.
So I began to feel even more stressed. 5 minutes passed and he was still at it. Now I’m frustrated. I was ready to “let him have a piece of my mind!”
But I tried so hard to keep my mouth shut. I needed the counter space. He was loud, very loud, when all I needed and wanted was a little peace and quiet at the end of the day.
Finally, after 20 minutes of playing, he quietly slipped away and went to what he needed to do. I hadn’t said a word. I hadn’t spoken, and I didn’t need to.
But then I felt it: the heart-ache. I missed those 20 minutes with my boy, that I could have had, showing him a little love and encouragement. I then stopped to think of all the things I could have done or could have said, to appreciate and encourage his creativity in play, his concentration on one thing for a good amount of time, his love for simple things, etc.
And instead, all I gave him was fuming silence irritated vibes. I know what I will do differently next time.