March 30, 2014

Habits

I am participating in a health challenge right now and I wanted to save my blog post from the challenge blog here for our family as well:

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I wanted to share something that has been on my mind from my gospel study this week. I read a talk from LDS General Conference (...I'm not sure if everyone participating in this challenge is also LDS, but regardless, I think the message is a good one for all... I hope you don't mind me sharing). It was from Elder Cook's talk 'Beware of Bondage' which focused on the Old Testament prophet Jeremiah. The part that has been on my mind this week is this thought:

"Our challenge is to avoid bondage of any kind... avoid spiritual, physical, and intellectual bondage..."

"Make any necessary sacrifices to protect our own family and the rising generation. The vast majority are not yet in bondage to serious addictions or false ideologies."

My week has been a little bit of a struggle as I have been trying to determine how I have been doing with this teaching in my family... and what habits, as a mother, I am creating in my children. There are some deep implications as far as the spiritual, physical, and intellectual... but I have been realizing more and more that this challenge has the potential to help me but also to really help my family as well. So my struggle has been recognizing just HOW MUCH I need to change to really become healthy (whole, complete, balanced)... I think that is always daunting to realize just how far we need to go. But I have also had a lot of sweet and gentle reminders of taking it one step at a time, and to just keep moving forward.

So in regard to the health perspective, I really want my children to have a healthy lifestyle. Not to be addicted to things that are not beneficial... yes, moderation... but not addiction. To have good, healthy views on food, not to be glued to the television, etc. etc. Deep breath. :) In talking with my husband about it we talked about creating GOOD habits, not just avoiding bad ones.

It really is worth any necessary sacrifice and I'm trying to find the strength and the methods to help make some of the changes we need to make in our family.

November 16, 2013

"What four year old poops in the tub!?" I said loudly as I rushed into the bathroom to verify her statement. I shouted more out of surprise than anger because maybe some four-year-olds poop in the bathtub, but not my very smart, capable, four-year-old. I thought she was well beyond that stage.

My hands hit the top of my head as I saw that, indeed, there was something more than tub toys floating there. "Jane!" I again shouted. She immediately burst into tears matching my frustration with shouts of, "I wish I wasn't four! I wish I wasn't four!" My heart nearly burst at her sadness and I dropped down and leveled my eyes to meet hers, "It's okay, Jane. It's okay. Even a four-year-old can have an accident. You're a wonderful girl and I'm so glad you're four." Her wet arms were wrapped around my neck and she cried some more. Oh, I felt so sorry for making her feel terrible about her mistake.

Tonight as I sat in the quiet of the house, feeding baby Wesley before settling in for the night, I reflected on my day and I prayed for forgiveness for how I handled that moment. I thought of how I want my children to be able to come to me with any mistake, not worried that I will hit the ceiling, but knowing I will be ready to listen and consider their feelings before any reaction. I want them to know that IT'S OKAY to make mistakes, it really is okay. They are still wonderful, smart, capable people and it doesn't make them less. I thought of how hard it is to remember to react that way in the moment and I prayed for help to slow-down. I even prayed for more chances to practice slowing down.

Then my mind flashed to another moment earlier in the day. I was talking on the phone with my Dad, on a video call actually, so he could see how my hands were full at that moment with the three kids. We were painting Thanksgiving turkeys, and Clark, the always experimental two-year old, was more interested in seeing what flipping the paint brush would do than he was in painting turkey feathers. We laughed as he did some show-boating for Grandpa and excitedly wanted to show him every cool move and muscle trick. Jane was begging to be helped with her turkey hand tracing so she could start painting. It was noisy, it was chaotic, as many times during the day are lately.  It was then he said to me with so much love, "Well Jill, you are a wonderful mother and you are so capable of raising these kids." I laughed and smiled because I didn't feel in control or very capable.

But just now as his words came back to my mind, I realize that was my Heavenly Father's way of reminding me that He also thinks I am wonderful, He thinks I am capable, and even if I make a mistake... IT'S OKAY. He loves me, he really loves me, and he will tell me that even in the hard moments if I slow-down and listen. I feel so grateful for that reminder tonight, and for the lesson from my Dad on how to teach my children to feel loved no matter the moment.

Phew. Deep breaths for more tub-scrubbing tomorrow.




April 23, 2012