This morning I woke up my 10 year old daughter. Need I say more?
I’ll explain for those of you who don’t have kids in double digits. Waking a child who doesn’t like to get up, is a frightening experience. Maybe you can imagine waking a momma bear sleeping with her baby cubs as you poke her, tell her you love her, and convince her she should come out of her warm, cozy slumber. Do you shudder to think of what the reaction might be? Yeah, that’s me on school mornings.
My angel, Charlotte, actually is an angel. She is the sweetest child I’ve ever known. But overnight something changes. Her tiny little voice becomes a deep sort of growling sound, as I stare over her in her top bunk in the morning. Her first words she manages to utter, Every. Single. Morning., are, “Why won’t you homeschool me?” Well honey, because mommy was losing her mind. Besides, I love dragging my butt out of bed at 6am every day to make sure all four of you are up. I count climbing the bunk bed ladder as part of my workout.
This morning I thought of my own mother, as I kissed Charlotte’s warm cheeks, hoping my grand love for her would cause her to sit up, smile, and start singing, “The Sound of Music,” and for a moment I had a vision of myself being woken as a child. What a nightmare I was. Sorry mom!
We lived in an older home when I was the same age as Charlotte. That older home had a wood burning stove in the basement for heat, and gorgeous old iron grates on each floor for the heat to come through. Lucky for my mother there was one such grate right outside my bedroom door….the bedroom I was sent to so often, it is one of the few things I remember from my childhood. Those grates could sum up my attitude as a child. When I was angry, or politely disagreeing with my punishment, I would march upstairs, and jump up and down on the grate, creating a lovely sound throughout the house. It was a gift. And it wasn’t a tiny little jump. I was the tiniest little thing you’ve ever seen, but wow I could pack some power into those stomping little feet when I erupted.
My mother was a patient, patient woman.
Personally, I am not naturally patient. I had to learn it. That little 40 pound girl with a wretched temper still lives inside of me. She’s there….but I keep her under wraps with chocolate and wine.
I don’t think it is ever too late for change. One of my least favorite phrases when someone is rude or unkind, is…oh that’s just the way he/she is. Really? It is usually said in a tone of, just accept it. No thanks. If you aren’t nice – stop it. Start being nice. There you go. I just helped you change. You’re welcome.
And why wouldn’t we want to change? Where is the excitement in staying the same person your entire life? If you are still here, no matter your age, it is never too late. We get one shot on this earth. One shot. If you aren’t where you want to be, make some changes. Take giant leaps or baby steps – whatever works.
Personally, I take leaps, and more often than not, I miss the target I intended to land on. So I fall. Then I get up, upset about the fall, and try again. And that is what we do…over and over. Because without taking chances, we never change. And if we never change, nothing new will happen. The same scenes will keep replaying again and again.
We can’t expect to find the love of our life, if we keep dating the same kind of man or woman with the same results. We can’t expect our career to sky rocket if we are putting in the same effort every day with no results. We can’t expect our children to be patient and kind if we don’t show them patience and kindness. There are answers to life’s dilemmas. The answers are usually in us. We just have to pull them out. We have to change.
Mom and daughter, both 10 yrs old. I love that little monkey…especially in the morning;)