Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Took My Breath Away

My normal radio stations were making my headache worse this morning, so I flipped over to the country station.  The song caught my attention, so I listened to the whole thing.  A google search just now taught me that it's called "Take Your Breath Away" by George Strait. 

I've heard the quote, "Life isn't measured by the breaths you take but by the things that take your breath away," but I've never given it much thought. 

Although corny, the song reminded me of that quote, and really made me think.  The thought came to me that we often remember our lives as a series of events.  But it's the way those events affect us that makes us who we are.  So when I heard the song this morning I determined to start taking notice of things in my boring old life that do take my breath away.  I'll write some of them here, as a way to be grateful for some of the simple and awesome things that happen all the time.  But otherwise would go unrecognized or even forgotten.  I encourage you to do the same on your blog or the comments here. 

To start, yesterday:  I was volunteering in Buddy's class at school while a professional artist gave the kids a lesson in drawing and the techniques of painting with watercolors.  The artist showed the kids some slides of art and colors and asked them all sorts of questions to get their creative juices flowing.  There is one boy in Buddy's class that is, in my opinion, a little socially awkward.  He lives down the road from us, so Buddy made friends with him on the bus and now they sit together on the bus, eat lunch together, and he's been to our house a few times.  He's not an outcast or anything, but not the typical outgoing person that Buddy is normally attracted to, yet for whatever reason (and I've asked myself 100 times why), he has became one of Buddy's closest friends this year.  Anyway, that boy raised his hand and answered one of the artists questions.  Immediately, I noticed Buddy try to make eye contact with the friend from across the room.  Then... I saw Buddy give him a thumbs up.  I hope to never forgot what it means to be a good friend.

Today:  Sambo started a speech class at the early special education offices.  He got all ready for "school," put his backpack on, and told me all the way over to the school that he didn't want me to go in with him.  He wanted me to leave him there so he could be a big boy -- and I did.  He was so cute I could hardly stand it.  And although he won't be three years old until Sunday, he grew up today.

Today:  I was reading a blog post today from one of my favorite bloggers.  She was writing about disciplining her 6-year old triplets and mentioned a comment she received on her blog four years ago, when her triplets were two.  "Shame on you for not possessing the same control you expect of your children."  This comment didn't just take my breath away, but sucked all my air right out of my body.  I am going to use this comment as a guidepost for my parenting.


R said...

You are so right to pay attention to the little tings in life - they are all marvels. I learned the last lesson you write about too late. I cringe everytime I see a parent losing control with little ones.

R said...

Now for a second comment I can't resist (talk about not having self-control). Mom has that exact saying on beautiful metalwork. Unfortunately, she first hung it over the toilet in the bathroom. It takes on a whole different meaning there.... It now resides on a bedroom wall.

M said...

Dad: Now you that you mention it, I DO remember that story. I had completely forgotten. That is HILARIOUS!!!!!!!!!!!

Myndi said...

Get a mug of hot chocolate and sit back and relax, because I've got a lot to say!

A. I love that song and thought about posting about it myself. Are you converting to country music?
i. Nearly every station that we get reception to is playing non-stop Christmas music already which has sent me to near all country listening lately (because they are not). Except Hip has developed a passion for Christmas music and gets upset when I change it!

B. Yesterday: while I was holding Hip down for his blood draw and I knew what was coming and he had no idea, I was trying to distract him by asking him questions about his toy car. In the middle of the conversation the needle plunged and he immediately stopped talking, started crying, and yelled "Daddddddddddyyyyyyyyyyy!" Even though it is not me he loves most and cries out for, I am so glad he has someone in his life that he knows loves him unconditionally. That took my breath away.

C. I have always held myself to the standard of expecting just as good of behavior from myself as I expect from the children I worked with and then of course of my own children when I became a parent. This was one of my mantras when I was working with parents. Unfortunately, I have completely lost control and am working my way back to that place. It's been a very humbling experience and at night when reflecting on the good/bad in the day I always come back to where I lost control and how much better the outcome would have been had I not.

D. I started reading "Positive Discipline" as a result of her posts. I've only read 10 pages so far and it has helped so much in 24 hours. One of the things the author points out in the first few pages is that punitive parenting is designed to create ultra-obedient children and sadly breaks their spirit in the process. This took my breath away because it has been my biggest worry through the last few months. So much so that I tearfully expressed it to L a few weeks ago, "I'm breaking his spirit." It's so weird how I knew I was totally wrong and couldn't/wouldn't change it. I do 90% of what the author says already but that 10% is what is going to help Hip's spirit thrive again. It's good to be reminded--maybe that's why we are asked to read and re-read the BOM:)

F. Those are super awesome stories about your boys.