Our just turned 12 year old son is awesome. And funny. And super smart.
He’s all sorts of great things, but at times he’s also obnoxious.
And weird. And loud. And cranky. And argumentative.
And if I’m being honest, there have been many times that I just haven’t liked his behaviors all that much. Like a good mom and like most moms, I always love my kids. But I don’t always like the ways that they act. In fact often times, I REALLY don’t like it.
A few weeks ago, I found that I was getting in a routine of mostly being frustrated with our son. I found myself mostly being negative about his behaviors and how he was acting. During this time, Christian wasn’t thrilled with me and I certainly wasn’t thrilled with him. But I really didn’t like the animosity that I was feeling towards our child. So I thought of something and it ended up really helping us and our relationship. I thought I’d share it tonight, just in case there is anyone out there that could relate.
One night I sat down with Christian and I shared what I was feeling. I told him what we both knew. That we weren’t on a great path and that I didn’t like being upset with him all the time. It felt like there was too much negativity, so I asked him if he would do something with me that I thought would help.
We called it “Five Things.” It’s pretty simple. He would think of five things that he was thankful for about me, and I would think of five things that I was thankful about for him. We’d take time every night to share these things and hopefully it would help. Our first night of trying this was so good. As we shared the things we were thankful for about each other, you could almost feel the tension that had built up between us start to melt away.
We continued on for the next night and the next. And I slowly noticed a change in both of us. No matter what had gone on that day, we ended it by building each other up and by sharing gratitude. All in all, it’s really helped to strengthen our relationship. And for this, I’m so very thankful. Too often, it’s easy to dwell on the negative when it comes to our kids. But being purposeful in sharing the positives is the best way to work that negativity out and bring love and strength to any relationship.