Monday, April 4, 2011

A Lesson from Dad

The longer I wait to post a blog, the harder it is to decide on what to write about.... so I just put it off longer.  So, now I'm finally doing it- yay for me!

As I think about the past month, I think mostly about parenthood and the challenges that come with it.  Tavish and I have had many power struggles with one of our strong-willed children lately.  I'll spare you all the details (there are many), but just to tell you- it has been exhausting.  I've had many people and experiences that has helped me cope with it all, so I thought I'd share just one of them.

A while ago we went to St. George.  On Sunday we go to all 3 meetings of church there.  The one particular strong-willed child doesn't like this idea.  I understand that; I'll admit that it isn't something that I always totally enjoy either.  It's hard going to new classes as a stranger... all of that.  Anyway, this was a battle I decided to fight.  There was no choice in the matter: he was going to his class no matter what.  So... he was defiant and decided to run away after putting him in sharing time... Ok- that isn't something to make Mom and Dad happy.  I was sooooo mad inside; we found him and put him back into sharing time...

While he was sitting in the back in sharing time (probably ready to bolt again), my dad, who is the bishop, had a small part to do for the kids.  He was planning on telling a scripture story to the kids.  Instead, my inspired dad decided to tell his story of going on a mission.  He told about how he was so afraid to leave on a mission and how he didn't want to do it... and how he decided to go despite his fear... how to overcome our fears... etc.  Then, my stubborn child suddenly got up and walked right up to my dad in front of everyone and said, "Grandpa, I'm ready to go to class; where's my class?"  He then willingly went to class and stayed the whole time.  What?!! After all our fighting and battling, it just took a story (and probably the Spirit) to help my boy decide to make the right decision.

So, once again, I learn a lesson from my dad.  Growing up, my dad rarely lost his temper with us and was never one to force us to do anything.  He was so good at talking with us, telling us stories, and inspiring us (rather than telling us) to make the right choices.  We always knew that he loved us and we all wanted to please him.  So many times in life I have thought, "What would my dad do in this situation, what would my dad say?"  And now, I find myself thinking the same thing.

This month, I'm thankful for my dad and the many other people who have helped me learn to be a better parent.  I know this motherhood thing can help me be a better person (or worse I guess, depending on how I react- I'm shooting for better).
Thanks Dad; I'm trying to be more like you :)
Sara and Andrew with their grandparents