My 13-month-old’s new favorite thing is getting himself into the chairs at his brother’s child-sized table. You can just see the pure joy in his eyes as he works with all his little might to get himself sitting (and occasionally, when he really wants to scare mommy, standing) in the chair and up to the table. He is so quickly becoming less and less of a baby and more of a little boy.
Yesterday, he was once again sitting in the chair, beaming over his great accomplishment, when his brother came up and rather aggressively put his arms around him. Teaching Eli to be gentle (even when he is trying to be loving) with his little brother has been the greatest challenge of handling sibling interactions (I should probably be rejoicing over this). Anyway, as Eli reached around little brother began to topple and mommy began to scold.
“Eli, be careful.”
“Eli, be gentle.”
“Eli, don’t grab him like that.”
And what did my husband, in his well-calculated wisdom, say?
“Eli, catch him he’s falling.”
“Eli, good job you caught him.”
“Eli, I’m so proud of you for being a good big brother.”
And then again, at bedtime, he reiterated, “Eli I’m so proud of you for being strong and catching your little brother.”
Yesterday, I scolded and told my son what not to do.
Yesterday, my husband told my son that he was proud of him and taught him a life lesson about caring for his little brother.
He taught me a life lesson too. I want to be calm in the moment. I want my kids to know that I am proud of them. I want them to hear more positive words from me than negative words. I want them to hear and see my love.
Today is a new day. Today I want to be wise in the moment. Today I want to be more like my husband, who so genuinely reflects the Father’s love.
What a blessing he is to all of us!