Motherhood: Persistence Pays

mannerssign

For ten years, I’ve been trying to instill good choices in my children.  Nice manners is at the top of that list.  Like many parents, I see the need to pass them down, just as we do old stories, from one generation to the next.

Until six months ago, my oldest used all of her basic manners pretty well.  Not always, not perfectly, but she definitely has tried hard.  At ten-and-a-half, I’m noticing something amazing.  She thanks people without prompts from me, and offers compliments because she is aware that it makes others feel good.  She’ll hold the door, or unload groceries from my car unprompted.  She’ll fold laundry, or ask what she can do to help.

This weekend was the icing on the cake.  She is in “ANNIE” right now at a local community theater, playing an orphan.  My parents and other friends and relatives have gone out of their way to come and see her which is so touching and means the world to her.  After the opening show Sunday night, I mentioned that my parents really loved the show, and did she want to call them?  I left it totally up to her, and she quickly said yes.  She took the phone and went into the other room.  She lay on the couch as she listened and responded to my parents questions about the show.  I noticed her long lean legs draped over the arm of the couch, and her beautiful long braids.  She twirled one with her fingers, smiling, poised.  I heard her say, “I’m so glad you liked it!” and then, “Thank you for coming!”.

My inclination was to run in with a cue card, a gentle reminder, or to give her a nudge of what to say next.  Instead, I smiled to myself, overcome with pride for her.  She finished the conversation in a thoughtful way and then came back to find me in the kitchen.

For so many years I wondered if my daughter would ever function in such a grown-up way without me.  Now I know that not only will she be fine, she will be great.   All of those year of encouragement and leading by example have led to a little girl who is blooming into someone wonderful.  If you’re reading this and are in the throes of toddler-hood or the preschool years, let me be the first to tell you that persistence pays.  All those times of thinking, “Do I have to remind him to say thank you one more time?” will come to fruition as you see the person they eventually will become.  It will make your journey worth every minute and more.

xo,

Brooke

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One thought on “Motherhood: Persistence Pays

  1. This is an exceptional Post. Nicely done.

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    From: the suburban chronicles Reply-To: the suburban chronicles Date: Wed, 8 May 2013 21:57:48 +0000 To: Gordie Spater Subject: [New post] Motherhood: Persistence Pays

    The Suburban Chronicles ~ The reward is in the journey. posted: ” For ten years, I’ve been trying to instill good choices in my children. Nice manners is at the top of that list. Like many parents, I see the need to pass them down, just as we do old stories, from one generation to the next. Until six months ago”

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