|Ethan, age 2.|
For those that don't know, I have two sons. I generally refer to them as "this one" and "that one". Several times I have thought of getting t-shirts so people can tell who I am speaking of.
This one is Ethan. Ethan is my oldest child and was birthed May 2, 2006.
He is strong willed to say the least. He specializes in helicopters, tanks, being a "big helper", raising his younger brother, asking about his not-yet-born sister, declaring that "God is in heaven but He's also eatting breakfast with us", and reminding me that "being disobedient is a bad choice".
Starting at age 3, we started having some issues, to say the least. Mostly in hitting, and being generally disobedient.
Seeing as how I live with him and I am around him the most, yes, I can see how this is true. I try to let his teachers know that I do believe them, yes he has done it, don't be scared to come get me. He has never thrown himself down in a typical tantrum like in the middle of the grocery store or anything. But he will buck and pull. If it doesn't make sense to him, he won't do it. He's a pretty physical kid. I haven't pinpointed his learning style yet but I'm glad I'm keeping him home with me. He is 100% boy. He still hits today and I always brace myself when I pick him up from Cubbies or Sunday School. The first thing I ask the teacher is "How'd it go today?" and I always remind them to feel free and come get me if they need to. I know him, I know what he's like, and I know it's not always daisies and butterflies.
He also has such a tender heart. A heart for others. A heart for serving. He genuinely says "I'm sorry". He is honest and readily admits to doing wrong. It's a struggle I see in him. I am continually teaching him to use his words, not his hands. Hands are for helping, holding, hugging. Hands are made for working alongside mom, stirring cookie dough and building forts. Hands aren't made for hitting. That's not what God wanted us to do with them when He made them.
I once read that in order for selfishness to die, we must deny our flesh. Selfishness in our household results in acts of servantry. If you are wronged, you must love outwardly with an act of kindness. If you hit, you must help. If you destroy the tower, you help build a new one.
"You are so patient with him."
That's a line I hear often from other moms. Or other people who see me with children in general. Patient. It has come at a cost. You rarely see me yell, scream, hoot and holler. It does no good. With Ethan, it makes it ten, twenty times worse. I must speak in a small voice. I must get down low, look him in the eyes, direct his chin, and speak calmly. A soft answer turneth away wrath: but grievous words stir up anger. Prverbs 15:1 This scripture is engraved on my heart. Embeded in my brain. It also works well with credit card companies. Another old country saying is "You get my flys with honey than you do with lemon juice." Amen. Try it, do it, act it. How can I get him to control his word, actions, and voice if I can't control my own? He see's, he soaks it up like a sponge, and that's how he'll be as an adult.
Tonight his teacher came and got me from Bible study to let me know Ethan hit. Let me tell ya, we are blessed to have such wonderful volunteers at our church, especailly in Ethan's 4 year old class. They are patient, they are kind, and they are getting to know him. Ms Amy always welcomes him with a smile and a "We'll try again next time, ok buddy?" God bless her. Plus, she has one girl, four boys. Home girl get's it. And another helper, Sarah. Who is so so so sweet. She's so easy to smile, I just love her.
"Ethan, why'd you hit that little boy?!?!"
"He wasn't helping to clean up."
|First night of Cubbies. He asks if Cubbies is "on" every day.|