Tuesday, September 8, 2015

The Ultimate Compliment

Compliments are always nice to hear, don't you think?  They don't have to be major earth shattering ones. The little ones when a person notices your new hair cut etc..should make you feel that you are important enough for someone takes the time to really pay attention to you! That is pretty much what it is all about..knowing someone cares enough to notice.

Many years ago, when I was a child, parents were told that your child would get a big head if you complimented them too much. Roll forward 40 years later when it became acceptable to compliment your child on everything in order to build their self esteem. Personally I think both are a bit extreme. I tend to think a person should compliment when it comes from the heart.  That becomes an individual thing as some people just aren't observant while others notice everything!

When we raised our kids we  received many compliments about our children. They weren't all because of their school accolades  in academics, sports, or extra curricular but also because of their kind hearts, thoughtful and caring ways and just being "a good kid" (as my mom would say:). 

I have to give credit in a large part to them being exposed to the virtues of living in a Christian atmosphere; not only in our home but in the church and among their friends with similar backgrounds. All of which lends to a big support system when kids have to be confronted with major temptations and choices while growing up. It makes a BIG difference to have that firm base to stand on in their lives (a compliment to God for how he influences ones life!).

While as parents we have these proud moments, there are also times when we wonder if we are handling things right or what did we do wrong?  Those can be tough times and perhaps those are the times we need to hear compliments the most, to remind us not to let these doubting episodes overshadow all the right moments.

Today I heard Matt Lauer from the TODAY SHOW make an observation after one of his interviews that just tugged at my heart. It was not only a compliment to the young man he interviewed but to his mother and father.
He said to his colleagues afterward, " Those are some wonderful parents!"
To me, that would be the ultimate compliment,:)

Monday, June 29, 2015

June 28, 2015- A True Happening

Oh my!  I have felt this before. I have been here before...years ago when my children are little.

As I sit on the edge of my bed and look out the window I feel myself whirling back in time.
Suddenly the sounds, sights and smells of the late evening air embrace me and hold me tight in a place and time I have lived before.

This is a familiar and typical hot, humid, summer night when the air is heavy and damp with a slight breeze pushing through the screened in windows.  In the distance I hear the muffled sounds of  crickets and frogs chirping and croaking in random chorus. The faint rustling of the leaves on the oak and maple trees whisper quietly and gently in the evening air which carries a faint wisp of freshly cut grass.

In my darkened bedroom the double hung window looks as if it is framing the dim, shadowy outline of the swing set in the back yard. It sits quietly and undisturbed after a busy day of the children climbing, sliding, hanging and swinging on its steel body.

I sit frozen; afraid and hesitant to move for fear of losing this familiar, comfortable moment that I had thought was forever physically lost in time.  Is it even remotely possible that I am suddenly able to embody that time  from the past which I had lived so routinely on those evenings for so many summers? I am overwhelmed with emotion as tears start to slip effortlessly down my cheeks.

 I sense my children asleep in their beds, laying on top of the covers with whirling, rattling fans blowing in their windows. I feel myself in the room checking on them; the boys hair damp from the warmth of the evening and their pajama tops thrown off in an effort to stay cool. Each have a relaxed grip on their worn thin sock monkeys which dangle listlessly over the edge of the bed.  I attend to the little girls with their dollies and ni-ni blankets tucked securely under the crook of their arms. So very gently my warm hand slides across their foreheads to lift the random hair strands off their faces in an effort to let the breeze touch and cool their dewy, rosy faces.

My whole body melts with emotion as I literally relive this familiar time. What is this miracle that has enabled me to go back in time?  I will myself to relax as I soak up as much as I can without disturbing it. It feels as though a light is beaming down on me and leading me gently back in to the folds of being a young mother with my sweet, precious children.  The air around me allows this to happen and I feel as though this must be a dream!

As I rise from my sitting position, the sensation starts to gradually fade and withdraw. I now step slowly in to the hallway and grip the door-frame as I peer in to their now quiet,dark and shadowy empty rooms. There is very little evidence that once their little feet raced and jumped on these floors or their little hands smudged up these windows.  These walls will never experience the return of those same voices that once recited nightly, "Now I lay me down to sleep..."

I take a deep breath but instead a sob escapes my lips and my chest shakes with muffled crying.  Tears of gratefulness flow from my soul in response to the gift that I was given tonight; the chance to go back and be reminded how amazingly beautiful being a mother is for me.
I lift my eyes upward and whisper, "Thank you."

Friday, May 1, 2015

Kindness Matters

I found this in our church bulletin insert and thought it worth passing on!

~A teacher once asked a group of students to jot down in thirty seconds, the initials of the people they disliked.  Some of the students could think of only one person. Others listed as many as fourteen.
The interesting fact that came out of this research was-- 
Those who disliked the largest number of people were themselves the most widely disliked.~