Kudos on a difficult job well done

What I know for sure is that for the most part, I could take a lesson or two from the primary school of thought known as the three-year-old.
Small children are grounding spirits of presence who are wise beyond measure. Or so I believe anyway.
Sue Patton Thoele hit the nail on the head when she penned, “One of the quickest ways to disturb peace of mind is to worry about the future.”
Three-year-olds aren’t consumed by worries of what might happen tomorrow, or next week, and they certainly don’t let the overloaded soul get in the way of what’s right in front of them.
Quick is the descent to being the victim when my ego nags at me to be troubled by what might be in the tornado of the “future hole,” as Thoele called it.
Then along comes a three-year-old to teach me about the present moment that I often lose touch with when I start projecting myself into the days that aren’t even here yet.
One of my six little peppers came to stay with me last week while her family was out of town and I’ll admit that in the days leading up to her visit, I was apprehensive because I didn’t quite know how I would juggle work, home life, and a child.
It was 48 hours of my life, and yet I was convinced I was too busy to handle it. Too busy. I am embarrassed to see the latter sentence in print.
Thank Heaven I didn’t let myself off the hook. For two days I was captured under the spell of a little person who holds wonder for almost everything under the sun.
That’s not to say she didn’t “wig out” in the local department store, and momentarily take on the personality of a budding Medusa, when Granny told her she couldn’t climb out of the shopping cart and run through the store.
Oh yes, I have seen the flip side in its purest form. The only difference is that now, at the age of 51, I am not swayed by the public tantrums.
When I was a young mom and that kind of Tasmanian devilry occurred, it was all I could do to get out of the store with my screaming child and my embarrassment cloak thrown over my head.
The coolest thing about a little kid who is angry and upset is that, for the most part, the moment is lived thoroughly and then left behind as they move on to the next “now.”
I need to learn how to do that more often—to have my moment and move on and not cook it up for breakfast, lunch, and dinner for five days straight.
However, my little pepper’s 15 minutes of fame in the shopping cart is but an aside to the real lesson here. I love my little peppers, and I remind them of how awesome they are and how much I love them every chance I get.
I wish I could say I was the one who planted so well the seed of positive reinforcement in a three-year-old that she pays it forward every chance she gets.
I am not the one who did that. Mother, father, and Zaagi-idiwin Aboriginal “Head Start” teachers, kudos to all of you.
My respect for your child-rearing couldn’t shine any brighter than when my little pepper said to me, without provocation, “Good job, Gran,” every time I did even the most simplest of tasks.
Oh, how the young can grow by example.
Good job, caregivers. Good job.

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