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Yesterday Toddler picked up a mug that had been left in the lounge room and tried to bring it to me. She dropped it on the way. Thankfully it had been sitting around for a while and the left over tea was cold and the mug didn’t break. But it did make a mess.

As I cleaned up, I remembered my mum telling me a story years ago, where dad had broken one of her special china teacups. He was very sad and sorry that it had happened because he knew how special it was to mum. But mum was very forgiving, knowing that it was an accident. She had a flashback to the times she told us kids off for spilling milk.

Josh was only little at this time and I remember talking about this – why do we forgive our spouse or friend but if our kid had done the same thing they would have received all the wrath we could muster!

This conversation shaped how I parent.

We need to be understanding, accepting that kids make mistakes too – that not everything they do is wilful disobedience, that not everything they do is designed on purpose to make our life difficult (for that is how we react sometimes).

We need to be forgiving – letting go of the disappointment and hurt, letting them know that we love them and that all is okay.

We need to be gracious – synonyms for gracious are: kind, polite, amiable.

Back to the spilt milk – I think the reason we often blow our top at these little incidents is because of inconvenience. We don’t have time to cleanup an extra mess. But do we have time to heal a broken heart because of our harsh words?

You can see the rest of my Living with a Toddler for 31 days series here.

Or find more 31 day series here.

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