I have two very strong willed girls (ages 5 and 4). When I’m not hiding in a corner crying or stress eating Dominos (can a girl get a sponsorship?) over having to navigate parenting these gorgeous lunatics, I’m actually thankful for their stubbornness.
“They’ll be less subjective to peer pressure”, they say. “They’ll be future leaders”, they say. “They’ll stand up for their convictions and beliefs”, they say. I don’t know who ‘they’ is, and maybe it’s all just a hope ploy to preserve a mother’s sanity but let me have it. (Hope and sanity.)
I read somewhere that when parenting a strong willed child you should try to say YES as often as you can. It’s always stuck with me. When I’m at the top of my mommying game I try to pay attention to the sheer amount of times I say no in a day. It’s a LOT. Honestly, I (as an adult) would lose my mind over that kind of constant suppression. How could I possibly fault them for the rebellion?
I started the day as this mom (convo below) and ended it as the fun mom (candid above).
Jovie (age 5)- *reaching for book two in her new Bob books collection* Can I read this?
Me- No. You have to read one first.
Me- Because your mother is controlling.
I really did answer her that way. I keep it real, folks. And I still made her read book one first. But I did try from that moment on to say yes when I could. Even if it was super inconvenient.
It was raining as we pulled up to the post office with a laundry hamper of about 20 THEBBTEE orders. Hubs puts the car into park and I am almost unbuckled and out of the car when I hear, “Can I come with you?” I groan inwardly but remember I’m trying to be a yes mom today. Before I could let out a “sure”, the little one echoed the question. Looking back, I’m not sure if I said “CRAP” out loud or just in my head. But CRAP! “Come on.”
They help me stuff packages in the metal shoot thingy and 5-10ish minutes later we were headed for the door in high spirits. I threw the laundry basket on Jovie’s head and lead her like blind man through the parking lot. In doing so, I accidentally led Rem straight into an ankle deep puddle. I scream. They laugh. I look up to see Hubs snapping a picture from inside the (dry) car.
Saying yes was so inconvenient and took way longer, but was way more fun.
And listen, I’m not in the business of letting my kids run the show. My little ladies have scripture about obedience on their memory boards and (hopefully) in their hearts. But all of this to say, just pay attention… be aware of how often we say no, when we could easily say yes. Who knows, you might even get a priceless candid out of it?
Let me know if you say yes more than no today. Any stories? I want to hear.