I was so excited. We had survived the stomach bug invading our house and Jackson was feeling well enough to meet his teacher at his school’s open house. (Did you know they do that for 20-month-olds?)
John held Jackson’s hand as we walked into the church where he will attend “school” two days a week. I was so excited when I saw the school t-shirts being sold and the little turtle on the wall with Jackson’s name written on it. He will definitely be a cute Toddling Turtle!
We were the first to arrive in his classroom and Jackson quickly made himself at home. He pulled up a pint-sized chair at the table in the center of the room. He checked out the toys as other parents and their children began to fill the room.
“This is going to be good,” I thought. “I think he’s going to like school.”
I snapped a few photos on my phone and sent them to my mom.
Then to my bewilderment I saw a toy truck fly through the air – and trucks aren’t supposed to fly – but it was soaring and Jackson had been the one to launch it smack dab at the little boy standing close to him.
“Jackson, no sir,” I said.
John grabbed him and also told him no.
“We don’t throw toys,” I said.
The little boy’s dad gave us the evil eye and then Satan whispered, “You’re one of THOSE parents.”
The little boy took both trucks and went on his way while Jackson threw a fit for the truck he had so easily discarded only moments before.
I wanted the floor to open up and swallow me.
John took Jackson into the hall and I listened to the drop off and pick up procedures – thinking all the while what a horrible failure of a mom I was.
Some days I feel like all I do is tell him no. In 20 months, I’ve learned I’m not as patient as I thought I was pre-parenthood.
My son doesn’t sit quietly and color. He runs through the house squealing, climbs things, and rams his trucks into the wall.
He still eats sitting in a high chair because if you put him at the table there are too many distractions. Who wants to eat when you can play trucks?
There are times I can barely pry his chubby little fingers off the item he’s determined to claim as his own – take my Sonic cups for example. 🙂
I’m struggling to find the balance between discipline and letting him be a boy?
Leaving his school last night, I felt so inadequate. So defeated. Am I really capable of teaching him and disciplining him to be the young man I pray he will become?
After a few tears and some sweet encouragement from some mama friends, God reminded me of a verse that He’s been bringing to my mind a lot regarding Jackson.
As I raise and discipline him, I have to remember that Jackson is “fearfully and wonderfully made.” (Psalm 139:14)
God knew he would like trucks and dirt and be on-the-go 24/7 long before He ever formed Jackson in his birth mother’s womb.
I HAVE to stop comparing Jackson to other kids his age, just like I have to stop comparing myself to their mother’s. What works for them isn’t always going to work for us or be what’s best for Jackson.
There is one piece of advice I can cling to – a verse given to me by a sweet friend last night – a verse to remember during these trying days with my strong-willed child.
“No discipline seems pleasant at the moment, but painful. Later on, however, it produces a harvest of righteousness and peace for those who have been trained by it.” (Hebrews 12:11)
All I can do is pray, trust God to give me patience and wisdom to be the best mama to Jackson, and love that Little Boy BIG!
And cross my fingers he doesn’t get kicked out of preschool 🙂
Do you have a strong-willed child? Any tips or advice for mama’s like me?