Monday, February 11, 2013

The List

Last April Caedmon was in a bit of a funk. Like everyone else on planet earth, he goes through seasons where he's, well, just not as enjoyable to be around. This was one of those times.

The "funk" had been going on for about 2 weeks and I was absolutely certain that he would snap out of it as soon as my parents arrived for their visit. He did...for about the first 3 hours of their week long visit.

On about day 4 of their visit my mom (who adores Caedmon almost as much as I do!) and I were having a conversation trying to figure out what was going on in that little mind and heart of his. We started trying to identify the strength behind every negative quality that was manifesting itself. Every strength that is pushed too far appears like a weakness. But the reality is there's a strength in there somewhere. A diamond in the rough.

  • Instead of manipulative, we deemed Caedmon a good negotiator.
  • Instead of demanding, we recognized that Caedmon is bold and has courage to make the ask.
  • Instead of picky, we decided that Caedmon is precise.

I wrote down our List in the back of my journal. It started off as a "Remember-You-Do-Love-Your-Child" List, but it soon turned in to a place for me to scribble down qualities that I see in him. Things worth praising and celebrating.

It wasn't long before it dawned on me, "Hey, I need a List for Sammy too!" I guess it hadn't occurred to me at first because perhaps in that season, when I thought of Sammy, I wasn't as desperate for the daily reminder that every child does, in fact, come with strengths. But I started my list for Sammy as well.

I cannot even tell you how many times I have referred back to those two Lists this year. I use them to pray for the boys. I use these Lists to praise specific qualities in them. I marvel at how different the two Lists are. When I notice something new in one of the boys, I make a mental note to jot that down on The List. Today, The Lists are about a page long for each of them...bursting with positive attributes, strengths, and God given gifts.

As we have been leading up to Valentine's Day I felt like I should write love notes to my boys to share with them some SPECIFIC things I love about them. I found some fun little mailboxes in the dollar bin at Target and wrote their names on the side. After they go to sleep, I sneak over to put a little love note in their mailbox and raise the flag. It is highlight of their day to read their "mail". You should see the way their eyes light up as I read them their love letter each day. They stand a little taller. They purposefully try to show me that characteristic all day long. It's been such a gift!

"Dear Sammy, I love how wonderful you are with younger children..."
"Dear Caedmon, One thing I love about you is how brave you are..."
" are a fantastic helper..."
"...nothing fills my bucket more than cuddling with you..."

The Bible says:
The tongue has the power of life and death. Proverbs 18:21

May our words breathe life into our homes today!

1 comment:

mrs. mewie said...

Love this post and those cute personalized mailboxes! :) I will remember this for future V-days.