O is 2 right now and I have to admit that most of the time I love 2 yr olds . . . but I do not love 2 yr old attitudes and 2 yr old power struggles. 2 yr olds are hard because they aren't quite old enough to negotiate with you so you have to be extremely patient and extremely consistent with them. If you give them an inch they will literally take a mile! 2 yr olds are also impossible to distract, once they have in their mind what they want their is no convincing them otherwise so I find myself asking the question, "How important is this issue right now?" IF it is extremely important for his future well being (i.e. no snacks if you don't eat your dinner) then I will fight the fight and I will win because I am the parent and it is my responsibility to teach him. But if it's not that big of a deal (i.e. going to bed in his clothes instead of pajamas) then I don't fight it.
Well the other day it was time to get ready for bed and I told O that he needed to have a diaper change and then get ready for bed. He on the other hand didn't want to have a diaper change, he wanted to play and as he so eloquently stated to me, he wasn't stinky, so he didn't need a diaper change. Well long story short I end up getting firm with him and I change his diaper and the whole time O is screaming like he is being seriously injured when he wasn't - if you have ever had a 2 yr old you know exactly what I'm talking about! My 5 yr old J is observing what is happening and after O is changed and dressed and we are sitting on the couch for stories J looks me in the eye and in his most serious voice ever he says to me, "Mom, are you on Team Jesus? Because I don't think that's how Jesus wants us to act!" I asked him how he thought Jesus would have handled it and he said, "Well, Jesus wouldn't have gotten upset and he wouldn't have let O cry. Jesus doesn't get mad, he just loves us!"
I could have argued with him about how it is my responsibility as a mom to make sure my child doesn't go to bed with a wet diaper that is just going to get more and more wet, and therefore I was completely justified. But I didn't. Instead I thanked Jacob for reminding me that I needed to be more understanding and more patient with O.
Later that night as I was laying in bed and reflecting on the day I thought about how Jesus would have handled that situation and I thought about how I handled it, and I came to the conclusion that I was quick to lose my temper and easily frustrated with him and that I had forgotten that O was 2 and that I need to have more patience with all of my kids. I thought about how my parenting would differ if the Savior stood beside me as I disciplined my kids and if he would say, "well done" or "let me show me how to do it better." So I thank J for that little reminder and I hope that it is a good reminder for you as well!