I often slip in subtle words of advice, perhaps a life lesson or two or a nugget of motherly wisdom that’s been dug from deep within and shined with my own spit. Their tearful accounts of hardships, dreams of what may be, and rage against the unjust all trigger a little lever that lets flow the abundant knowledge and training I have acquired over the years.
“Well, perhaps you could look at it like this” I offer.
“Remember to treat others how you like to be treated” I remind.
“You don’t know the whole story” I point out.
“Give them a second chance” I encourage.
“It’s best to simply focus on today” I advise.
But on one particular occasion, while in the middle of preaching life lesson #42, her 8 year old head turned on its side and her puzzled face looked at me a little too deeply. I felt myself edge toward the fridge as I do in times of unrest. I had become trapped by her gaze, and feared that all I held true was about to be torn apart, shredded into unrecognizable pieces and left strewn across the foundation of my ideals.
She proceeded in a clear and precise voice announcing to the world,
“You say things that you never did as a kid”
Yep, she got me! She saw right through the words and into my core. (As children do) She was spot on, I didn’t do any of that stuff as a kid. And truth be told, I still don’t do half of it as an adult either! So when it comes right down to it, all the mini lectures and teachable moments are not always meant for her. Because in the day to day running of our lives, whether it’s through the accounts of an 8 year olds day, or one honest question, I am both teacher and student.
As is she.