One thought immediately came to my mind as I began thinking about how I would like this year to be different from last year. I want to cry less and laugh more. I believe that 2016 is going to be a year of laughter for our family. It’s going to be a year of joy. We’re only a week into the new year and I’ve found myself laughing more.
Late one night Hope got up, went to the bathroom, and then went back to bed. 45 minutes passed and all of sudden she was standing at the foot of our bed. She asked “Why do I pee so much?” And then she turned and went back into the bathroom. Brett and I both cracked up. I don’t remember the last time I laughed that hard. In the middle of my laughter I realized what a huge moment this was. It was the first time that Hope has ever asked a “why” question. She normally would just say “need to pee again.” I can’t even put into words how exciting this moment was. And all because our little girl drank a little too much before bedtime.
Last Sunday I handed Hope a pair of shoes and told her to put them on. The next time I saw her she was wearing a different pair of shoes. “Hope, those aren’t the shoes that I told you to put on!” She said “Daddy said so!!!!” Sure enough Daddy had told her that she could wear them. But Daddy didn’t realize how dirty the shoes were which made them inappropriate attire for Sunday church. Daddy is so much more fun than Mommy. I made her change the shoes. Hope got hopping mad at me. It was a foot stomping how dare you not let me have my way kind of moment. It wasn’t pretty. As we loaded in the van Hope glared at me, stomped her foot, and said “You get one more chance, Mommy!!!!!” I did what any good mom would do. I laughed myself silly. Yes I did.
In that moment I couldn’t help but notice how far she’s come. Her language skills have soared in the last year. She used the proper emotion and included a foot stomping for emphasis. I didn’t have to wonder what she was thinking or what she was feeling. It wasn’t a moment to reprimand her for her behavior. It was a moment to savor. It was a moment to celebrate the emergence of new language skills. And it was a moment when I was forced to realize that her behavior only mirrored my behavior Yes, she’s really just a mini-me. She’s heard me say “You get one more chance, Hopey.” And she’s heard me say it with impatience and without a hint of kindness in my voice. So in that moment the Lord gave me a gentle reminder that I need to work on my character. I’m thankful that His voice is always kind and that He always give me one more chance.