I Guess You Can Teach An Old Dog New Tricks

It was a typical, windy day in Oklahoma.  I was getting the brunt of it because of the location of the porch swing that June afternoon.  I didn’t mind.  It made the 90° weather bearable. At the same time, my six-year old decided it was time to clean the red clay off his bicycle.  I think it was just an excuse to get wet.  I didn’t mind at all because at least he was cleaning something.  That is, until I saw the sponges he used. My brand new sponges from underneath the kitchen sink. Immediately, my mind started going back and forth like a ball on a ping pong table as I listened to my future empty nest self speak calmly while my realistic, present day, frustrated momma ranted and raved because she wanted to teach that boy a lesson about getting things he has no business getting. The battle raged for a dozen seconds or so, but eventually, the future empty nester in me won. I don’t like that frustration comes easy to me when it comes to my children.  Don’t like it one bit.  But, I also realize that the reason it does it because of the huge responsibility I feel when it comes to raising my sons to be not only healthy, respectable citizens, but most importantly, God-honoring and God-fearing young men. So, while I tend to lose my cool when my boys do things that boys do, I didn’t today.  When he came and told me he got the brand new sponge from the unopened box, I chose to ignore the $2.15 waste and just say, “Okay, baby.  Good work.” Because again, in ten years, will this even matter? That’s what I thought.

9 thoughts on “I Guess You Can Teach An Old Dog New Tricks”

  1. I admire you for learning that lesson while he’s in single digits. My oldest turns 16 in three weeks and it’s only been recently that I silenced all my complaints about being a taxi service and began soaking up all the conversations that take place DURING taxi time. Wish I had zipped it and enjoyed it a lot sooner. Love you!

  2. I am always kicking myself for not going with the empty nest mom. Hubby told me to count 5 seconds before I react. It has been working lately.

  3. I’m learning a lot about how much I treasure my “stuff” regardless of how small or big it is. We’ve lived in this house for 3 yrs now and the girls have holes in the bedroom wall from the cartwheels they do, the paint is chipped on the desk because they play like cray on it, same with their bathroom cabinets. Last year I was all, “Ugh! Can’t they learn to take care of a dad gum thing?!” This year? It’s just stuff. Nothing that compares with their happy, creative, giggly hearts that I adore.

    I think it’s not as much about me teaching them to take care of stuff (which they still need to do) but me learning to let it go.

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