|This is what the good life looks like for Jane. Cody, Jane and Maurie did some backyard camping last night.|
|I took myself out to dinner this last week. Being alone doesn’t bother me, but Jane is teaching me that it is the friend sitting across from you that can make life better.|
Learning from a Social Butterfly and a Giveaway Jane, in the last few days, has been teaching me about what happiness looks like. She has always been, and, I hope, always will be a happy, energetic person.
On Friday, there was a family picnic at her school. Cody took the day off to work on some projects at the house, so he was able to come with me and the girls to join Jane for the picnic. We came to be with her, but I barely saw her. She was running from friend to friend meeting their families and occasionally coming back to introduce her friends to her sisters and parents. She literally was running around everywhere and we would have to specifically ask her to stay on the blanket for one minute, but as soon as I started to talk to our friends, she was off again.
On Saturday, she played with friends and her sisters all morning and then went to a birthday party in the afternoon.
On Sunday, she went to church and then played with new friends at a birthday party we attended for a church friend.
On Monday, she played all morning at the Memorial Day breakfast (Grateful for men and women who sacrificed all for the freedom I enjoy.), then played all evening at a BBQ with friends and then backyard camped with Cody and Maurie.
Sometimes I wonder if Jane’s childhood is okay, but then I think about it and there is little that can ruin her happiness because she draws her strength from her friends and family. She is a social chameleon and considers everyone to be her friend. As long as there is someone to meet and play with, she is good to go.
I have to admit that before nearly every event we attended this weekend I said, “Cody, I’m not sure if I want to go.” As you can see, Jane and I have different gifts, but I can certainly learn from her warm friendliness. I have also found that even though I am apprehensive to go to social events, I am nearly always glad that I went. Jane knows that true happiness is in the connections, the relationships that she makes with those around her. I am grateful for her example.
What have you learned from a child? >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
I love that little babies will smile at almost anyone. No matter what you look like, how you smell, your intelligence level or the choices you make, my little Benji will give you a smile.
Lucy Bowman says
I love how easy it is for children to love and not judge! The innocence of babies is super special. Thank you for sharing. I sure wish I could be close enough to see Benji's smile in person! I am grateful to see his smile and his growth through social media though.
I have learned that it's ok to be silly. My anxiety doesn't like to let me let loose most of the time. So when I watch my kids being silly it helps me to remember fun time when I was Willy to be silly with them.
Lucy Bowman says
I love this lesson. I can get too intense and serious sometimes, so I appreciate the silliness as well. Kids have a lot less worries than we do, huh? And they are so resilient even when things don't go their way. Thanks for sharing Audra!
Alyssa Panganiban says
I was taking care of two toddlers: Jenny and Robert. I buckled Robert in the high chair (that wasn't high at all) and gave him his bowl of applesauce then turned my back. From the corner of my eye I saw sneaky Jenny snag his bowl of applesauce and run for it. I whipped around and immediately I could see all of the things that could go wrong as she gave me a ha-ha smile.
#1 dirtying my newly swept floor and vacuumed carpet.
#2 those are her only pair of clean clothes.
#3 Robert crying for his applesauce.
#4 I don't have time for this!!!!!!!!!
So, I chased after her. But seconds later her wobbly little legs caught the edge of the carpet. The bowl of applesauce spilled across the carpet and tile. She sprawled stomach down in middle of it. I started over to her—and I could feel the anger rising to my cheeks. As I marched for her–she kept on trying to escape but the applesauce was too slippery. In a brief moment I saw past my anger and glimpsed a very funny situation. (I don't how I did it… kind of a miracle) I knew I had a choice: I could hold on to this funny glimpse and laugh with this this little girl stuck in applesauce or I could look past it and get upset. I learned from Jenny that when frustrating things happen I can choose between making the situation enjoyable or making the situation horrible.
Lucy Bowman says
First, I hope that the applesauce cleaned up alright…on your flooring and on Jenny. =) lol. I am super impressed that you were able to see the humor in the incident, and I am grateful you were honest about your train of thought and initial reaction. It was encouraging that even someone as calm and controlled as you are can be provoked; leave it to a toddler. =) Children definitely give us opportunity to make hard decisions between happiness and anger everyday! I loved President Hinckley for his consistent reminder to laugh at ourselves and enjoy life instead of being upset and disappointed all the time. I needed this reminder. Thanks for sharing. You are a champ for watching two toddlers and Emma!