“Mommy you’re mean.”
These are the words I heard from my 3 year old as I got onto her for disobeying me.
Sigh. It broke my heart. I had to put myself in time-out and think about if I was really too hard on her OR if she was being a turbulent threes toddler. (Spoiler alert: she was being a turbulent threes toddler. Haha!) That’s not always been the case though. Sometimes, often times lately, I’ve actually felt convicted of being a mean mommy. Raising a toddler is complicated. Then add stress, rushing around, allergies, lack of sleep, 4 more kids or any other thing you can think of that makes a mama edgy. If you’ve been here, raise your coffee cup mama and let’s pinky swear being in this together. It’s a wild ride. 😊
Motherhood is hard. I mean, gosh, one minute this cute little thing is holding your hand, calling you pretty. The next, she’s staring you down for cutting her sandwich the wrong way. I know, who knew there was a wrong way to cut a sandwich!? There is. Apparently, triangles are no longer okay. And, only some days is it okay to cut the crust off. Not every time. Cue loud, whaling cry, complete with fake tears. Head thrown back, looking like a Pez dispenser.
Mama said there would be days like this. Mama also said, “this too shall pass.” Mama’s right. So in between the ups and downs, let’s rest in knowing God sees us. He is working in our hearts every moment. Let’s be intentional about connecting with Him in that. Let’s be intentional about finding our tribe of women that help encourage us, gently correct us, uplift us and coffee with us. The women that “community” with us.
You see, these tiny humans that God has trusted us with, feel really BIG emotions. They feel frustration like we do when their arm goes in the neck hole of their shirt. They feel joy like we do when they see something new and exciting. They feel hurt like we do when they fall or confused when they don’t understand something. But, they don’t yet know how to process like we do. They don’t yet know how to verbalize these emotions like we do. Heck, if we’re being honest, how often as adults do we do a GOOD job at verbalizing or processing our emotions!? Right. If you thought to yourself, “not often enough”, then YAY for your honesty with yourself! So in the moments that are hard, if we can really try hard to remember these things and that our littles are not the enemy, then we win by association. (With Jesus, Knocking out the real enemy- Satan.)
I talk about being intentional and trying hard but what does that actually look like? How do we really do that instead of just reacting?
—— First and foremost, we get with Jesus! We do this through daily prayer, daily devotions and daily Bible reading! We stay in the Word. We do Self-care (there’s a blog about that on my site too). We stay connected to our tribe of other mamas.
—— We.intentionally.love.our.kid.well. We get to know our kiddos. We learn about our kiddos. We spend quality time with (our phones put away) our kiddos. That helps us know how to love them well and parent them well.
—— We give ourselves grace when we do NONE of the above. When we feel like we failed.
I won’t even dare touch on the topic of discipline here because that’s a coffee date for another day, but all kids are unique and won’t react the same. So getting to know our kids is SO important.
One day our kids will be grown. Our house will be quieter and cleaner. On those days, I imagine I’ll miss the old days. I don’t want to look back on those old days knowing there was wisdom being offered and I ignored it for pride.
So, to help me and YOU to end the mommy -toddler wars, here are my favorite scriptures that help me on the hard days.
On the days when I start to be a “mean mommy” or even if my kiddo feels like I was being mean. Even on accident.
I pray you will discover God’s heart for you and your kiddo in them. I hope you’ll find encouragement in them.
Know you aren’t alone in this mommy thing. I love you and I’m standing for you mama!!
For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, and all are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus. Romans 3: 23-24
He who began a good work in you will perfect it until the day of Christ. Philippians 1:6
But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. 2 Cor 12:9
May God give you more and more grace and peace as you grow in your knowledge of God and Jesus our Lord. 2 Peter 1:2
Let us then approach God’s throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need. Hebrews 4:16
And now I commend you to God and to the word of his grace, which is able to build you up and to give you the inheritance among all those who are sanctified. Acts 20:32
But he gives us more grace. That is why Scripture says: “God opposes the proud but shows favor to the humble.” James 4:6
But if it is by grace, it is no longer on the basis of works; otherwise grace would no longer be grace. Romans 11:6
And after you have suffered a little while, the God of all grace, who has called you to his eternal glory in Christ, will himself restore, confirm, strengthen, and establish you. 1 Peter 5:10