Actions Speak Louder than Words

This is not a newsflash. You need to own it, your own bad behavior or at least my own bad behavior. There is really no good excuse for being short tempered with your kids. They don’t deserve it and no amount of telling them you are sorry or that you are stressed will work. Kids, like people, do not respond to what you say, they respond to what you do. I feel like a perpetual Nike ad, Just Do It!!!JUST_DO_IT_by_Magic_Jowol (1) The tricky part really is how this applies to Bryan. For Jason, if I am stressed or angry or anxiety filled he will ask me, “Mom, what’s wrong?, why are you sad or why are you mad?”Sometimes the topics are too mature for him, but if I give him a general idea of what is happening, he will give me a hug or just be a little more sensitive. I can say to him, “hey J, I need a little more cooperation and patience from you right now” and he gets it and tries to comply. Bryan just says things like “you’re frustrated with me” or “everything will be ok”. When I hear Bryan say “everything will be ok” I want to barf. I know he is self-soothing and it means that the stress level has tipped the scales. You can tell your kids do as I say not as I do, but they will always do what you do, so behaving like a stressed out lunatic is some seriously poor modeling.
Spending time with the kids is huge. And I don’t mean existing in the same house. When I get home I hear Jason wanting me to do something with him and Bryan wanting me to do something else. It is always a struggle to find time to give each of them attention in the way they want it; but the message is key, Mommy, give me time, love, play with me!! The lesson, which for some reason I need to keep re-learning(is that a word?) is that you need to do something with each of them, even if it is only 15 mins, doing what they want to do. Sounds so simple, but at times execution or taking action after a long day of work and a pile of stress is the toughest thing of all. Time to dig deep and remember that all of this behavior that you are exhibiting whether on purpose or not is all being tracked by these kids as if it were an app on your phone. The data is in storage and can be retrieved at any time.
This weekend they are leaving for sleepaway camp. I am always annoyed by parents that complain about packing a kids trunk. What can be better than putting your kids precious stuff in a big bag that will enable them to have an amazing summer? I love ordering labels, I love labeling things with their name and I love the idea that when they open their bags they will know that Mommy and Daddy made sure they have what they need. I have written my first letters to them today. I like them to have mail when they arrive. I am careful not to say I miss you and I love you too much, I don’t want to stir up homesickness. I will write again tomorrow. I tell them both that I will write every day and I always do. I guess that’s the point, actions speak louder than words…

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One thought on “Actions Speak Louder than Words

  1. I am not sure that kids or anyone only respond only to what you do and to what you say. I think both are important. Anyway, as you note spending time with your children is so very important and allowing them to make the choice of what gives them some sense of control.
    There are so many lessons that I re-learn seemingly on a regular basis.

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