“Mommy, leave Abby alone.”

My patience has been wearing thin lately.  It’s Sophia.  She’s talking non-stop, and she’s such a bossy little booger. She’s really enjoying playing with Abby, who’s getting around and interacting more than ever.  (Abby just started crawling and clapping. So sweet.)  But, she bossing Abby like a little Mommy.  Everything is “I need that!” or “Stop that!”  She won’t let Abby play with anything, yanking it out of her hand, or hollering “That’s mine. I need that!”  She even bosses around her Cowboy. This morning was disruption for me when she told me “Mommy, leave Abby alone.”  Alright, what’s up?!

The last couple of days we’ve also been struggling with hitting.  She’ll get upset because I told her “no” about something, and then she’ll grunt, and say “I’m mad. I’m going to hit you.”  We’ve had some talks about this, about using her words.  We’ve had some time-outs, she’s apologized… we’re getting somewhere.  She’s definitely learning that it’s not okay.  This begs the question, though, Where did she learn that? Ugh.  I can’t possibly police every minute of media that enters her eyes and ears.  We read books, she watches some age-appropriate t.v., she plays with kids at church, but she absorbs and then ‘tries out’ EVERYTHING.  Monkey-see, monkey-do, I guess.  So, maybe this is a phase?  Eventually, she’ll acquire a filter through which to process media?  What’s okay to try out, what’s not nice, what’s down-right wrong…

Here’s what I’m thinking about this morning: it’s the struggle with age/role-appropriate behaviors–between tones and words that are okay for Mommy to use but not okay for Sophia to use back at me or with other people.  For example, I can tell her ‘no,’ but she doesn’t need to tell me ‘no.’ Or, the fact that I can sometimes be bossy or seem bossy because I’m being Mommy… and, I don’t want her to be a bossy little girl. Maybe, I don’t know how to not be bossy.  I was a bossy little girl, too.  Thanks, Mom.  😉  What to do?

How do I teach her to be sweet, humble, and gentle? How do I model sweetness, humility, and gentleness?  Is it too early to expect anything greater than mimicking, and if so how should I be presenting myself in front of her?  Because, isn’t that the greatest lesson–how mother behaves with her family is a model for how her daughters should learn to behave in and with the world.  I came across an article recently.  It’s mostly on home-schooling, but there was a piece in there that really got me to thinking about my behavior in the home.  My role as daily-teacher is not just when I’m trying to help Sophia learn her letters or count to 20, it’s when I try to help resolve conflicts between her and Abby.  It’s when I am frustrated but chose to act out of love.  It’s my attitude when she won’t quit bugging me or Abby won’t quit crying.  It’s when I’m… being…

Well, I guess that’s my thought for the day.  How am I being an example of Christ to my babies today?

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One Response

  1. Ohh, the hitting…we’ve been struggling, too (and the biting, and the pinching, and the pushing, and the hair pulling). I don’t think you should be too concerned that she “got it” from anywhere. I know Oliver’s behavior is just a natural instinct–he certainly didn’t learn it from anyone or anything. We tried time-outs. They helped a little. We have lately moved to spanking. Well discussed, rational spanking for behavior that harms others or has the potential to seriously harm himself–if he doesn’t stop after a warning. Oh the joys of parenting!

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