Something to Remember

Hopefully you were able to catch up on our Branson trip this past weekend here.

In that post I let y’all know how awesome Ben did on the car ride down. No crying, yelling, fusing, a sweet little angel. He was actually really good all weekend. That is until it was time to make the almost 4 hour trip back home. That experience was the complete opposite of our ride down to Branson. I think God likes to remind us that just when we think we’ve got everything under control, we need a little test to humble us.

When we got home from the trip, we were exhausted and I was feeling defeated.

I’ve been thinking a lot about that trip home. The excitment of going on a trip was gone. We were all  tired, and my patience tank was nearing empty.

Was it too much to ask for a little quiet in the car? Couldn’t Ben just sit and be still? Take a nap even? And then, instead of thinking about how Ben acted, I looked at my own actions. Were my requests reasonable for a 3 year old?

Car rides are a great time to reflect, listen to music, and think about things on your mind. For a 3 year old, long car rides are the most.boring.thing.ever.

I think the reason our car ride back was less than stellar was because my expectations were less than stellar and even out of line perhaps. I chose to fight every battle in that car on the way home. And when that happens nobody ends up winning. Why should I care if Ben wants another drink of water? Or if he asks me 50 times if the Onceler is bad, or if he wants to use another wipe when he’s already cleaned his hands 100 times. In the grand scheme of things, IT DOESN’T MATTER.
Ben wasn’t actin a fool just for the sake of it, he was bored and wanted my attention. Positive or not. And even when it feels like you have nothing left to give, being a parent means you sometimes have to muster up all your energy and play I-Spy just to make it another 10 miles down the road.

From now on, before I get onto Ben I’m going to check myself and my expectations. I’m going to make sure that what I’m asking him to do is reasonable. I have high expectations for Ben. I want him to do and be the best he can be. But I also want him to look back on his childhood with lots of fun memories.

There will be times when I lose my cool and make mistakes. But being a parent isn’t always easy or pefect. You strive to be a better parent everyday. At Paw Fish’s funeral, J’s grandma reflected on their family and their life together. She said something that has stuck with me ever since. “It wasn’t always perfect, but we had lots of good memories. The good sure outweighed the bad.”

That’s my wish for Ben when he looks back on his childhood. It may not always be perfect, but hopefully it’s filled with lots of good memories.
And you know what? I’d say we’re doing ok so far. Even with a few car ride disasters.

One Comment

  • MalloryBo

    I like this post, mainly because my little one has been driving me CRAZY this week. I was actually just talking to our Parents as Teachers lady this week about age appropriate expectations as well. It's nice to know us mom's are in the same boat. Thanks for the post!

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