Going back through the photos that our boy took on his camera on our recent Zoo trip, getting to see things through his lens, I can’t help but reflect on his innocence. How free our young children are to look at things without judgement or presumptions.
I’m not sure if it’s the older I get, or the more children I have (possibly the latter as my age didn’t triple overnight, unlike the number of children we have 🙈), but I find myself challenging my reactions & thoughts more and more. In those moments where I find myself taking certain things personally and reacting defensively, I’m also trying harder to question myself and my reactions, and to reason with myself by adopting more of an ‘innocent until proven guilty’ approach.
I find myself reflecting on my own actions, you know the times where maybe I’ve looked at something and then been distracted (usually by one of my cheeky monkeys) and have forgotten to respond, or perhaps haven’t put the usual thought into my response. Or the times where something has completely gone over my ‘Mum brain’ and I’ve missed a key piece of information or an important cue. There’s also been the times when I’ve been caught up in my daily activities and I’ve forgotten to check in, or I’ve been dealing with something greater and haven’t been able to be where I’ve really wanted to be (either physically or mentally). All of these imperfect moments and actions that have taken place unintentionally, or without the intention of hurting or offending anyone.
By putting things into perspective, remembering we’re all human (and that this parenting gig is all-consuming in both amazing and challenging ways), and that the way we see things can be (and often is) so very different to those around us, I’ve found that it helps me to refocus and let go of those niggling thoughts.
Don’t get me wrong, this is still very much a work in progress, because I am exactly that (aren’t we all!?), but I’m happy that I’m in this place of challenging my thoughts and making improvements.
So, whether you’re reading this and thinking about how important the innocence of our children is, or you’re happy that someone else takes things personally (often unnecessarily), or you’re relieved that you’re not the only crazy who talks and reasons with themselves 😜, or perhaps it’s made you rethink how you’ve reacted to something – it’s important to remember to be gentle with yourself (you’re only human), and to be gentle with others, maybe giving them the benefit of the doubt (they’re only human too… I think). We’re all on this crazy ride together, so let’s relax and enjoy it 💛