Lessons from a Two Year Old

G is becoming increasingly independent these days. Sometimes it’s amusing to watch him standing on the doorstep of boyhood, learning something new every moment of the day. Sometimes, I admit, it’s annoying when he’s so intently focused on doing something independently without regard to safety, right or wrong or time.

And then there are times that are divinely inspired to teach his parents a lesson.

Today, j went outside to play first thing. After G finished breakfast he wanted to go outside too. I got him dressed and sat him on the sofa to wait while I went to find his shoes and socks. This is pretty much a daily occurrence, so he understood the plan.

While I was tracking down the shoes, he goes over to the back door and starts pulling on the handle, wailing as only a boy in distress can, sounding pathetic. He said “side” for “outside” and in his exuberant wailing the one-syllable word was stretched to unlimited proportions. “Go siiiiiiiiiiiide!” he kept on wailing.

When I found the shoes and socks, I returned to the sofa. “Shoes and socks first, G, then you can go.”

“No” he says, now approaching mad. He crosses his small arms across his chest and drops his head to mope. (Both my boys are masters at moping.) He’s not big enough to open the door and now he’s just mad at the world for obviously conspiring against him.

“Come’mere and I’ll help you.” I said, holding out the shoes. I know that he understands that after he gets his shoes on he can go out.

“No.” he says again, defiantly, punctuating his declaration with a foot pounding against the floor.

I set the shoes and socks on the sofa and went to the kitchen to take care of other things. For a solid five minutes he pouted, right there at the door, seeing his brother playing outside but unable to join him because of his lack of shoes and inability to open the door himself. He fussed a bit…in words only G understands but it was obvious to everyone around (me) that he was complaining and ranting. He may not know the proper words to use but he is a master of gestures and inflection. Frustration is somewhat universal, I guess.

Finally, after a few minutes of ranting, he decided just maybe there was a more productive course of action to be had. (Ya think?)

He went over to the sofa and picked up his shoes and socks. He brought them to me in the kitchen, sat them at my feet, plopped himself down beside them and looked up at me with a slight measure of humility.

I gave him my attention and squatted down in front of him.

“Hope me?” he said simply. (Hope=help)

“Please?” I said.

“Peas hope me.” he said.

Of course I did. He was calmed and willing to comply with the plan of socks, shoes, outside, in order.

As I opened the door and let him outside, I was struck by the thought that this scenario plays out in my walk with God in much the same way. I get impatient with His plan for me and my family. I get an independent streak. I try to do things on my own and usually end up crying over it. I stomp my foot and wonder why things conspire against me. I pace and pout. I get angry and depressed. I kick the door I can not open by myself.

Then finally, when I am exhausted and spent, and emotionally drained, I finally go the Father, as a last resort, and say “Hope me.”

Why is that?


Leigh Ann said...

I love this post. I think parenthood has taught me more about God's love than anything I've ever experienced.

Anonymous said...

Nana is so proud! Mom, too.