“Children learn early in the life that life is either a gift to be enjoyed or a burden to bear.” ~Dr. John Bowlby
How I live my life speaks volumes to my children. The more I stumble along this path of choosing joy and gratitude, the more I see how the opposite can negatively affect the small people in my life. If I choose to live each day as a nuisance and a burden, I am raising them to do the same. I am stealing their joy.
I know that words have power, to build up or tear down. I know that the words I choose to tell myself can make or break my attitude toward life. But what about those words that just float out there for anyone to hear…and what of these children who listen to what I say all day long?
When I am cleaning up around the house and muttering about the mess, a natural byproduct of a house full of kids. When I “vent” on the phone to a friend about how my kids are driving me crazy. When I heap on sarcasm out of irritability and impatience.
While at home, I can feel that I should be able to “let down my guard” and let emotions rule. I forget that someone is always watching and taking notes.
The way that I approach my life is a lesson plan for my children in how to live. What am I really telling my children?
My attitude often shows life as a burden, children as inconveniences, chores as drudgery. My words reinforce the lesson.
I need to scrap this curriculum of negativity and teach them something new.
I want to tell them that life can be hard, but is always beautiful. I want to show them that every moment is a gift. I want to model a graceful attitude, a positive outlook. I want them to know that every moment I serve as their mother is a privilege.
I know that change is possible: humble gratitude gives birth to joy, and joy witnessed is contagious. When I model that joy, they will catch my “disease.”
Proverbs 15:13 – “A happy heart makes the face cheerful, but heartache crushes the spirit.“
How do you model a positive attitude for your children?
Lydia is Mama to 4 (soon to be 5!) little ones, wife to a wonderful husband, knitter, writer, grace-seeker and beauty chaser. You can catch up with Lydia daily at Small Town Simplicity.