I am often amazed, befuddled, perplexed, flabbergasted, annoyed, etc. over some of the crazy things my kids do. Things that make absolutely no sense to me because they're obviously messy, destructive, will get them in trouble, silly or dumb. I'm often left shaking my head and wondering why they do the things they do. Is it just to annoy me? Do they like getting in trouble? Do they just not care? Why? There are days when I let it get to me way more than it should. I let it interfere with life and cause more grief than it's worth. And that affects every one's mood and can be damaging to our relationships. It's stupid. And then I have a moment like I did today. A moment that was like getting smacked in the head with a 2x4 and made me say, "duh, Christa! You need to let some stuff go".
I was cleaning off and out my toaster. As I was dumping the crumbs out of it, I remembered a "brilliant" idea I had about 30 years ago. Something that made perfect sense to me at the time. It just came to me one day as I was buttering a piece of toast. A real light bulb moment. I thought to myself, "it would be so much better if I buttered the bread before I put it in the toaster then I won't burn my fingers doing it after". And so began a rather long period of pre-buttering bread before it was toasted. A period in which my mom often wondered why the toaster smelled so funny and wasn't working very well. I didn't tell her I knew why and I remember thinking I was so clever and such a gourmet cook. I also remember getting my cousins to try it and swearing that they would never make toast the dumb normal way again.
Eventually, my brilliant idea ruined the toaster and when my mom found out why, she was pretty irritated. But...I don't remember getting in too much trouble for it and I think it was because she knew I was just a kid. I didn't know any better. And that's what I remembered today. It made me sad because all too often, I don't let things like a kid pre-buttering their bread roll off my shoulders because they're just kids. I get mad. My kids don't do the silly things they do to be destructive, or even to annoy me. They do the things they do because they're just kids right now. They're going to do silly things and I need to learn that's just fine. They're going to grow up and stop doing the silly things they do now. And eventually, like maybe 30 years down the road when they have their own kids, they'll remember the dumb stuff they did and realize they need to not be so hard on them. I know this, because it's the conclusion I came to today.