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Friday, September 3, 2010

L-O-S-T Spells Lost

The other day, Joseph lost his second front tooth leaving him with an adorable, toothless grin.  He's struggling to pronounce some letter sounds and getting used to life without his two front teeth.  During his spelling lesson yesterday, we came to the word "lost".  Our routine is that I say a sentence and then he makes up his own sentence.  I was thinking about his new, gummy grin and said, "You lost your front two teeth."  His sentence was, "This morning, you lost your temper."  UGH!

I can't deny it.  It's totally true.  I did lose my temper.  And right away in the morning, too.  I constantly struggle with my expectations of the day and the reality of what unfolds.  I expect that the children should be able to sit still and listen during our morning prayer time.  We talk about the importance of being still and training yourself to sit quietly and listen.  I've seen them all do it - I know that they're capable of it.  So, yesterday morning when Joseph was doing headstands, Lillian was flipping her head around, and Eleanor was,well, just being two...I l-o-s-t my temper.

I think, though, that is one of my favorite things about home schooling the children.  Not the losing my temper part, but that the good Lord takes opportunities to reveal my shortcomings and use them as teachable moments for us all.  We work hard in our family on the development of character and virtue.  As we practice, I need to be a model for the behavior I expect from the youngsters.  We have many chances to stop and discuss our reactions to situations.  Many times, I am able to give praise and point out positive things.  Other times, however, we have a different type of talk about where we fell short and can work improve the next time around.

A few months ago, I was really struggling.  I found myself focusing on my shortcomings and areas where I had failed that day. I talked about this with my husband who helped me to see that this was not a productive way to end the day. So he suggested that I do an examination of the day before I go to bed and start off with the things that went well.  I started doing this review of my day before going to sleep.  I begin by thanking God for all the good and successful things that unfolded throughout the day.  Then I ask for His help in the areas where I fell short.  This has been a very good thing for me and has helped me to see areas where God is helping me to grow. 

So, I'll continue to pray for patience, a kind heart, and the ability to see the children through God's loving eyes and not my own.  Hopefully the children will be able to say, "Today, mommy has not l-o-s-t her temper!"

God Bless!

Heather :-)

One of the kids' favorite things is having Dad read to them before bed.
I just snapped this picture a few minutes ago and thought I'd share it.