5.06.2009

Lesson from a 3 year old

"There are so many disciplines in being a parent besides the obvious ones like getting up in the night and putting up with noise during the day. And almost the hardest of all is learning to be a well of affection and not a fountain, to show them we love them, not when we feel like it, but when they do." ~Nan Fairbrother

I'm not a full-time parent anymore, but I do have three children, two in-laws and five beautiful grandchildren. So my life is full, busy and happy as I am involved with my loved ones and the things happening in their lives.

So, the story is this. Yesterday as I was playing with Mason he looked at me and said, "Grandma, stop talking. You talk too much!" And I have to say that I was the teensiest little bit insulted -- probably because I know I do. I was the kid who got the notes from the teachers [year after year] saying, "She is a good student, but she talks too much." My husband says the reason he is so quiet is simple self-defense. [?!] And there are times when I give myself a headache with all my talking and want myself to shut up. So I swallowed my [ever-so-slightly hurt] feelings, looked back at him and said, "OK, Mason, I will stop talking now," and was quiet for a minute. And of course, he didn't really want that -- and what I learned from his sad little reaction is that he needed to know that his Grandma loved him, even if he told her she talked too much. He wanted me to be that well of affection.


So I grabbed him, rolled around on the floor with him, hugged him and kissed him and tickled him and reassured him that all was well in his world and Grandma did love him, even if he thought she talked too much -- and made sure that he knew that at the point in time when he needed to know it.


The lesson? That we all need to be loved. Whether we talk too much or not. Whether we tell our Grandmas to be quiet or not. Constant, unconditional love matters most.

16 comments:

Shelley~Maren said...

I love your posts Jan. And how insightful too. I'd never given much thought to offering my love to those who need it when THEY need it... I'm usually more than willing to offer it when I feel like it, but that's probably not when it's wanted/needed/appreciated the most. :) Thanks for the post. Gives me something to think about this week!

Aryn said...

Another great reminder/lesson. You do talk a lot, but that's (part of) what makes you so fantastic. They have me in YW's now and I think of you often and how I need to be more outgoing with the girls... I think the talking (and big personality) was what made us love you so much.

hoLLy said...

i wish i talked more sometimes! i get shy in certain situations and wish i had the outgoingness(i made up that word:)that you have jan! when i'm comfortable enough, i can't shutup though-haha. i think joey is quiet for the same reason your mark is:)

and thanks for the reminder on loving people when they really need it. that was a cute story about mason. kids are so brutally honest, aren't they? love it though:)

Melissa said...

I am also a talker...Katie sometimes says (when I am talking to another adult) "Talk to ME." She just wants to be included and like you said know that they are loved!

Ashley said...

i totally agree with you! we all need to be loved despite our flaws (but i don't think talking too much constitutes as a flaw). ;)

100 Percent Cottam said...

he's such a turkey! :)

MiaKatia said...

Such beautiful thoughts! I love that he just wanted to know that you loved him no matter what. What a great reminder.

Chris and Tara Mason said...

So funny. The other day Daniel told me that I was the worst mom in the entire world because I wouldn't let him eat ice cream for lunch. Kids - they're crazy! Sometimes it's refreshing that they say what they think, and other times it just makes you want to go eat some ice cream all alone in your room (or Dove chocolates). :)

Andi said...

So true!!

Home Sweet Home with the Englehart's... said...

Jan, you exude great wisdom...I want to be like you when I grow up! I am hot on your heels, so I have ALOT of growing up to do!

Renae said...

The golden part is, you knew what he wanted. Mason is very lucky.

Darleen said...

I've notice that when my children need to know they are love is when they are having a meltdown or tantrums. The times when I should be discipling but instead I grab them, kiss them and talk to them eye to eye. It helps to calm them down.

Natalie Scott said...

I love all your talking!

Brutally honest, kids are. But like you sorta said...it's the things we know are actually true that actually hurt!

Please never quit talking...we girls like it ;)

Carrie said...

Good story. I love your thoughts, it would've been much easier to initially be slighted and then shrug it off as "he is just young and doesn't know better". Good for you and thanks for sharing.

Hacking it up said...

love that! Yesterday Conor said," Hey mom,i love you--sometimes" When I asked him why just sometimes he said, "except for when you get mad at me and yell at me ad stuff..." :( I think I'd rather be told I talk too much...

Nat Lud said...

He is so cute. What a special thing to live so close to your grandkids. I love all of your posts always!