True confession. I’m a control freak. Everything has to be in order. Don’t leave the lights on. Ask before you take something. Put away what you take out. Go to bed at your exact bedtime and not a minute later. You can have free-play during this time. If I ask you to do something, you do it in that exact moment, and I am not asking again. I’m structured and a rule follower to a fault and expect that behavior from my kids.
Every morning it’s the same routine: wake-up, get dressed, take your vitamins, meditate, eat your nutra-grain bar, get in the car and go to school, so imagine my surprise when I go to the twins' room and they are loudly professing "I want donuts!" Say whaaaaat? You know that has NEVER been on the morning checklist, and it would push me getting to work at a later time, which like I said, I'm structured - I park in the same space every day and walk in at the same time every day, so why are we speaking such nonsense?! My natural response would normally be a big resounding, "NO!", but that's not what I said today. Today, I saw kids that just wanted to take a break, have fun, do something different and spend time with their mommy! Today, I learned a lesson from two 4-year olds that pushed me outside of my mold.
There's a growth opportunity if you accept the lesson. Lessons can be taught from anyone and anything. Today, I realized that just because I'm wired in a structured manner, doesn't mean I can force others around me to be the same (insert eye roll from wifey when she reads this and says she has been telling me this for years). I realized that sometimes, I need to just sit down and eat a donut! Okay, another admission, I just couldn't get down with the donuts. I mean is there seriously anything unhealthier than that or with more sugar?! Twin 4-year old boys, on their way to Pre-K full of sugar? Nah...I like their teachers too much to do that to them. So...we went to Chik-Fil-A, and chomped on some hash browns and fruit. The boys played on the playground, which again, I would normally not be down for because all I see are germs when I look at those things!
Today, I didn't rush them. Today, I followed their lead instead of demanding that they follow mine. Today, I let them call the shots. Today, I took extra moments to just connect and love on them. I already can barely lift them anymore because how big they are, and I don't want to waste the short amount of time I have left with them being little ones on complete structure. I'm proud of all of the work my wife and I have done to this point, and in a lot of ways, I felt I HAD to be this structured because I was scared to have twin out-of-control kids. I didn't want to be outnumbered, so my fear is the main reason I have chosen to tighten the rope. My fear of adopting two black boys in today's climate is why I push them to be great so hard.
I will always be structured, and I accept that. I will always expect our kids to be their best! I will also take moments and more opportunities to honor who they are and what their needs are, as they have a life to live as well and deserve to experience it in a way that makes them happy. Sometimes, we just have to LISTEN to what others are saying to us. Okay, I didn't get the donuts, but I made a promise that I will pick the kids up from Pre-K today and take them to go get some donuts!