In the past year as I’ve watched my oldest son’s personality develop, I’ve learned more about myself.

Paxton is a typical firstborn, he’s quite particular about things and he’s a perfectionist. Watching him become frustrated over not being able to put puzzle pieces together or stack blocks ‘just so’ reminds me of myself.

And quite honestly, his 2-year-old reaction is how I want to react sometimes too when things don’t go quite how I want them to.

A phrase that’s used quite a bit these days in our home is ‘no big deal.’

When Paxton makes a mess or something gets broken, I tell him (and myself) that it’s no big deal.

Young children are going to make messes whether it’s coloring on the wall, spilling a cup of milk, peeing in the floor or breaking things. As a parent, you have to give your children grace in these situations.

A few weeks ago, as I was unloading groceries, I heard a loud crash in the house. I ran into the kitchen to see Paxton holding a broken worcestershire sauce bottle. After realizing he wasn’t seriously hurt and giving thanks that all I had was a big mess and a small cut to care for, I told him it was no big deal (and reminded him several times, he was quite upset by the mess!)

He was simply trying to help his mama and the bottle slipped from his hand. It took a good 30 minutes to get Paxton cleaned up, determine a clean up plan and get everything cleaned up.

When I was finished cleaning, Paxton walked into the kitchen and said, “It’s gone! You did good mama!”

And yes, I ‘did good’ cleaning up the mess, but more importantly, I ‘did good’ in my reaction to my son. Messes will be made, things will break and your plans will be altered but in the big scheme of things, it’s no big deal!

Rachel

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