Last night i found myself ranting about someone I don’t really know, but never really liked (that usually happens when past relationships get entangled with present ones). I was going at it for a good ten minutes when my 11yr old overheard what I was saying and asked if that person I was saying mean things about did something bad to me personally before. I said no, but her existence somehow has an effect on my life and the thought of her just irritates me.
To this, my son replied, “But mom, why can’t you be the bigger person?”
That basically shut me up.
(mommy in tantrum mode)
It dawned on me that while I was whining and complaining like a spoiled brat, my son was teaching me the mature thing to do. Be the bigger person. Pretty embarrassing, really. At that moment, the roles were reversed. I was the immature one.
We teach our children about fairness, about having good manners, about patience, understanding, about not being petty… all the good things, all the values that we would want them to imbibe. But sometimes we forget that we do have to be role models. We have to set an example… we cannot teach them one thing and act the opposite way. We do have to be careful with our words and our actions specially around our kids because we don’t want to be inconsistent.
Being the bigger person is not always easy. There really are people who just rub you the wrong way that the mere mention of their names make you go ballistic. Yet how can you expect your children to be non-violent, peace loving citizens, when they see you blowing your top just at the mere mention of one name?
Self-restraint. This is something we should all have.
Yes, and next time I rant about some person I dislike, I’ll make sure that my son’s not within earshot.
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photo credit : myvibrantfamily.com