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February 4, 2019

Teach Her to Climb Down

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I want to travel the world with my little ones. I want to find the beauty & joy in parenting. I want to raise good people. I want to enjoy style & beauty. I want to create a warm & beautiful home. This is where I share my attempts at doing it all...

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baby girl with white bow on white modern chair

From the day she started crawling my firstborn was a climber. She would climb on top of the coffee table… she would climb on top of the sofa… she will climb from the sofa to the window ledge…

Nothing in our tiny New York City apartment was safe.

I remember asking a wise mother – who was a few years ahead of me & who also happened to be a former preschool director – “how do I stop her from climbing? I’m so worried that she’s going to fall and get hurt. What do I do?”

Well, my sweet friend looked at me and chuckled.

“Oh Lauren,” she said, “you can’t stop her from climbing. You can only teach her to climb down.”

What a lesson in motherhood.

We can’t change who our child is. We can only teach them to be who they are and to grow from it.

Or put another way, we cannot control the outcome. We can only control the effort.

It’s a phrase that I’ve been hearing lately over and over but it seems to be such a lesson in parenting. Essentially, the effort is our responsibility. We cannot control who our children are… what they love… what gets them worked up…

We can only control how we respond to it.

baby girl in grey romper with white bow clapping

So mama as you’re dealing with that toddler melt down… as you struggle to help the preschooler understand how to share… as you push through another evening of third grade homework… just remember you can only control who they are, you can only control how you respond…

And if we meet our little ones with love… if we come from a place of wanting to teach them instead of control them… how would that change the way our days go?

If we allow ourselves to know that we aren’t responsible for their meltdown – that’s theirs – and it’s not our day that’s changed by their meltdown – it’s theirs – and if we meet them with love, with compassion… whether the meltdown is from the preschooler who doesn’t want to share or the  third grader who doesn’t want to do her homework – then maybe instead of budtting heads, maybe we could find a way to work together and to learn together…

because Mama, at the end of the day we can’t change a climber from being a climber. We can only teach her how to safely climb down…

XOXO

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