Why It Is Good to Have a Child Just Like YOU

My youngest child, Sweet Pea, who is twelve is just like me in so many ways.  There are ways that she is not like me that are wonderful, too.  She has always been a sharing, giving, helpful child.  She has a great sense of humor and loves to make people she loves laugh.  She hates to see anyone be sad.  She loves hugs and cuddling.  I've had to explain that some people are not huggers, so she needs to ask if she can give them a hug. She still loves to scrub floors - one of my favorite things to do when I was little. She loves to cook and experiment in the kitchen - taking a recipe and coming up with something new - and often better - than the original.  She takes up for people who she feels are being wronged and will stand up to most anyone to defend others.  Even when that person is me and I'm getting on to big sister for doing Sweet Pea wrong, Sweet Pea will come to big sister's aid.  I love that about her.

Even so, there are the personality quirks that are just like mine that are ones I wish she did not get.  She has mastered the eye roll.  She cannot hide how she feels - happy, disappointed, sad, angry - she wears all that on her face.  A friend kept her for a week while I was taking care of my dad.  The girls along with her daughter were going to a community activity each day that week.  She commented to me after the week, "I saw that look.  I didn't know whether to reprimand her or congratulate her on already mastering 'The Mom' look." I was laughing and shaking my head at the same time. That girl! Goodness!

A couple of weeks ago, she did one of those attitude things that 'tweens and teens have been known to do that got on my last nerve quickly.  After I reprimanded her, I was flooded with memories of times I had that same attitude with my own mom and did not comprehend at the time how truly annoying it was.  No wonder it drove Mom nuts.  I went in straight away, called Mom, told her what happened, and said, "I know I did that when I was her age.  I had NO IDEA how annoying that was - until now. I am SO sorry."  She laughed.  We talked more.  She later sent me a text that read, "I'm not sure I told you this when we were talking.  I forgive you."

Of course as moms, we forgive our children.  We have the example of a loving heavenly father who does just that for us.  That being said, I think it is good to be both Mom and Daughter.  I am fifty years old and I just called my mom to apologize for things I did 35 years ago.  It was still good to do.  It reminds me of how much I appreciate my own mom.  I think it helps my mom know that I appreciate her, too, even more as I get older with my own children and grandchildren.  That's why I think when God gives us a child that is very much like ourselves, both the good and the bad, it reminds us to:

  1. Be careful in our correction of our child's behavior.  It helps my daughter when I correct her about these things that got me in trouble when I was younger to know that the apple didn't fall far from the tree, bless her heart.  I know what it's like, which is the reason I am correcting her so she can be mindful of those attitudes to start making corrections now so they don't come back to get her in trouble as an adult.  (That eye roll thing was a doozy for me to work on as an adult.)
  2. Repent of our past behaviors that we did not recognize at the time - both to God and to the one(s) to whom we exhibited those attitudes when we were children - especially our hard-working, long-suffering mothers. God bless them.
  3. Be grateful for God's love and forgiveness of us and reside in the joy and peace He alone can give us.  That includes the peace of knowing that God loved us and helped us through those times and He loves our children just as much.  He will guide and help them - and us - as we draw closer to Him each day.
  4. It also allows us to draw closer to our own loving parents to remind them of God's love for them and that their hard work was worth all the effort, tears, and frustration that came along with the pride, joy, and laughter, but was sometimes not in balance depending on the stage of life we were in.
To be honest, I cannot even recall what my daughter did that day that annoyed me.  The slate is clean.  What I do recall is how much I love her, how grateful I am to Mom, and how much I love God for loving me enough to love me through all of those times and that He continues to seek after me.  Thank God for giving me a loving mom, even though my personality was not like hers, she loved me anyway. God is good all the time.

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