Parenting, therefore, requires vast amounts of patience.
If you have been praying for the Lord to give you patience, but you want it right now - just ask for kids!
Patience comes hand in hand with parenting. It really is on the job training that starts in the nursery, when patience is needed dealing with the crying baby in the middle of the night. Later we continue to rely on patience to get us through the toddler tantrums, tween turbulence, and teen turmoil.
One thing we have found helpful is to give a warning signal to our kids that our patience is running thin. Very often, it is humorously voiced in a loud, sarcastic bellow, "Bring me a BIG BOOK!"
The first time our son heard us utter that call, he obediently went and retrieved a huge book off the shelf. What he didn't understand at the time, is that we really just wanted to bang our heads against it!
Nowadays, they don't come running, lexicon in hand, but usually, smile and take a few steps back or perhaps retreat until the coast is clear.
It is our funny little way of letting the kids know to back off for a minute and give us a breather. Perhaps we need to discuss an issue with the other parent or just get through the task at hand before we can deal with it or they need to reassess their behavior before we can continue.
In any case, our kids know how to translate our repeated plea of, "Bring me a BIG BOOK!"
It also comes in handy for expressing our frustration to each other at other times. Very often we have found ourselves yelling for a book during political debates or watching a news program. Other times we may whisper it under our breath in public if we find ourselves in aggravating circumstances, where we may not feel comfortable voicing our opinion or getting into a debate. It's the secret code to let our family members know that we either disagree vehemently or are so exasperated that we are done and need to extricate ourselves from the conversation before we explode.
"Bring me a BIG BOOK!" has proven to be well worth repeating and more fun than just counting to 10!
Disclaimer: No books or heads were actually harmed during the writing of this post or the process of our parenting. We do not advocate actually banging your head against a big book. We just understand the urge.
< previous 31 Days post ~ next 31 Days post >