Google+ Mommy Moments with Abby: Little Sponge Behind Me

Monday, May 23, 2011

Little Sponge Behind Me

So easily we forget how quickly kids learn. They are constantly learning, growing, making connections, and developing who they will be as adults. Most of what they will become will come from us and not only what we motivate and put in front of them to learn, but by what we show them through our own actions. They will see what we do and take it as a model for how to react to different things in the world, if we are negative toward a situation they will learn to be negative, if we are indifferent than they will be indifferent, and if we are excited toward something they will be as well. They look to us for some of the biggest lessons in life and we will teach them without even realizing we are giving them these lessons.

This was never more apparent to me than this weekend. I was driving to the store and while I was crossing an intersection some not so smart or considerate person (aka an idiot) ran the red light so I had to slam on my brakes and maneuver so they wouldn’t hit us. Now, I realize we are all busy, but that is no excuse for anyone to risk others lives by trying to beat the light, if its yellow that doesn’t mean speed up. Naturally, my response to this was to angrily hit my steering wheel and call the person a jerk and say they needed to learn to drive in a very loud and angry voice. So, what do I hear from the seat behind me? A little voice in an angry tone spit out baby babble and then she hit the arm of her car seat. Since, my daughter is learning and repeating words I try to be more conscious of what I say so I hadn’t cursed, but to have her mimic my mannerism of hitting something was a wake up to her picking up more than just my words. You would think I would be more aware of this tendency to pick up on my emotions and reactions, but we are all human and sometimes I forget what the little sponge behind me is learning.

If we want our children to have manners, not be spoiled, express emotions properly or anything than the first place we should look is ourselves. How are we acting, expressing emotions, showing respect, letting things effect us, displaying politeness? Our children are seeing all of this and learning it for themselves, so if your child is a brat chances are you taught them to be one. Kids will be their own person at the end of the day, but most of what they learn comes from the people in their lives. If you want a child to be frugal and creative with money, then do the same for yourself and when they are old enough offer to get them a sewing machine and in exchange for specific extra chores a small allowance to take to the good will and let them create their own clothes or get patterns to make their own clothes. If you want them to be excited about learning, be excited yourself and make museums and other educational things rewards for jobs well done. In closing, whatever you are doing remember that you always have a little sponge behind you absorbing everything you say, do and feel to be conscious of yourself. Maybe in being more conscious of ourselves we won’t only create better people for the future, but we will create a better self for the world now.


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