Wednesday, January 7, 2009

WFW: Slow 2 Speak



Every family has its own "personality".     Every parent has their own "style" of parenting.    Our children know us and know our "style" and in that they find safety and security.

Recently, I really stepped outside my "style" when the boys and I were working on something and I was tired and really hurting from my fibromyalgia and something that was going on outside of our little family of four was really bothering me.     All of that had made me edgy (but no excuses).   

While kneeling in a tight corner, the boys were playing and Little Guy dove into the rocking chair slamming it into me.     I turned around and literally yelled at Little Guy.     Both guys froze in their tracks.     Big Guy sat down and said, "Mom.... you have never yelled at us.   Ever."       Little Guy didn't say anything.   I can't tell you how badly I felt.   

We all sat down and I had to apologize.    However, I knew that one thing was true.    The damage was done.    Do they still love me?    Yes.    But, did that one moment make a huge impression on them.    Definitely.    Uncontrolled anger leaves a mark, a permanent stain, that we can never erase.

I sat down in the floor, apologized and told the boys this story:

"There was a little boy with a bad temper. His father gave him a bag of nails and told him that every time he lost his temper, to hammer a nail in the back fence. The first day the boy had driven 37 nails into the fence. Then it gradually dwindled down. He discovered it was easier to hold his temper than to drive those nails into the fence.  Finally the day came when the boy didn't lose his temper at all. He told his father about it and the father suggested that the boy now pull out one nail for each day that he was able to hold his temper. Most days he got to pull a nail but some days he had to pound a nail in.  The days passed and the young boy was finally able to tell his father that all the nails were gone. The father took his son by the hand and led him to the fence. He said, "You have done well, my son, but look at the holes in the fence. The fence will never be the same. When you say things in anger, they leave a mark just like the nails left a mark in the fence. It won't matter how many times you say I'm sorry, the wound is still there."

That verse is now marked in my boy's memory Bibles.     I hope that when they see it they don't remember their Mom's harsh words, but they remember my willingness to ask their forgiveness.

23 comments:

Hot Tub Lizzy said...

Ugh.... I officially suck as a parent.

Dr. Wifey said...

you should get an award for mom of the millenium!

Deanna said...

Lizzy - No you don't. You are an amazing, Mom. I read your blog too. You are exactly the perfect Mom for Gert and Essie.

Wifey - Not so much! Every night I lay in bed and think, "How did I screw up today? What could I have done better. Let me count the ways!!"

From the Doghouse said...

If I counted all of the ways I screwed up, I'd never get to sleep.

K Storm said...

We all have to remember that...it is really hard sometimes too...

Dawn said...

Have to admit, so your link on FB and had to read before I made a phone call this morning to the neighbor about their dogs. How you put your words and how you speak will make a difference. Thanks for the reminder first thing this morning :) Have a great day and look outside....IT'S SUNSHINE!

Joyfull said...

This is one of my favorite verses and one of hardest to keep. Wonderful reminder and encouragement to be slow to speak! Thank you for sharing.

mayberry said...

Ouch...

my toes hurt....

Buzzard Roost Babe said...

I like the little story ! I to must confess I have yelled before too! I come from a family who were experts at the art of word swords ! When I yell I sit my kids down an apologizes, and we hug an talk... It is forgiveness that pulls the nails out and I have forgiven my parents just as my kids have me! I am not perfect I make mistakes too and my boys know moms knows how to say sorry too!

Kristi said...

What a wonderful opportunity to instill Truth. Keep up the good work. God is using you in a mighty way!

Amydeanne said...

wahhh you got me all teary. i love that story, but i love how you took care of your kids and worked on healing the hurt!

Sharon said...

What a story, I thought I was going to cry with you. Then I started thinking about what you wrote, you are the most beautiful Mom I know~~~~(besides my mom) :)
The lesson you just taught us and the lesson you just taught yourself, welldone my friend. What a inspiration you are to me and to so many of us.
Thanks for sharing
Hugsss, Blessings & Love
Sharon

Kayra said...

Like Doghouse said, if I counted how many times I screw up per day, I'd never sleep. But, in all fairness, when I do lose it with the kids, I always apologize to them.
You are a great mom, I love your blog.

Laurie Ann said...

First, let me say I'm so sorry you suffer with fibro. I do, too, and it's not a joy to have. I'm so sorry about what happened but love how you immediately resolved it and gave your boys a lesson that will last a lifetime. Your honesty helps spur us on. Thank you for being such a great encourager! Happy WFW!

HEATHER said...

Thank you so much for posting this. While at the hospital one of the radiology nurses was rude to me, so the next day she showed up in my mom's room and I laid her out! Oh it was awful! I was horrible. After I ran her out of the room I was immediately remorseful and said a prayer for the Lord to forgive me. I went out and apologized to her and told her I was so sorry, and that was completely un-christian of me.
She forgave me and asked forgiveness for her previous rudeness to me. This verse I will mark in my bible. Again, thanks so much!

Mimi said...

Wow, great verse & story, thanks for sharing!

I have a great Inspiration giveaway going on my Devotional Daze blog, so stop by & check it out!

LauraLee Shaw said...

Yup, tough one for me too. (sigh) Thanks for your vulnerability in sharing it, though...

Peggy said...

Blessings & happy & blessed New Year Deanna...now that Christmas-Epiphany is actually over!!! Great verse & reminder of how we should respond! I love that story of the nails...good one to use & how super an example of a mom admitting her fault & asking forgiveness. Beautiful picture of God's grace, mercy & a mom's love! If you never yelled until that point in their life...that deserves an award! Unless they are unbelieveable angels! SUPER PARENT STYLE! God bless you and I hope the harsh words fade!

Melissa B. said...

A good lesson for them-and for you-to learn. I wish I could control my temper more!

Amy W said...

Excellent reminder - and one that I need often. I think I need to find a hammer and some nails...

Jnette said...

Excellent post! Really enjoyed the story. I think we can all relate to having those moments.

hennhouse said...

GREAT!

I need to hang this on my office wall. Or maybe on my computer screen!


Happy WFW (a day late)!

crittyjoy said...

What a powerful reminder Deanna. And that photo is so neat...

Blessings.