Under the Weather and Over the Moon

Purposeful Parent Tip: Teach your Child Compassion for Others

I spent most of Sunday night hovered over the toilet. You know the scene. My son had so graciously shared his stomach bug with me and it was rearing its ugly head. I do believe there is nothing worse than sitting alone in the dark hugging the porcelain god and praying for it all to just stop.

With little to no sleep, I awoke on Monday morning at 6:00am to the sound of my alarm and quickly realized I was going nowhere. My son came into the room and I told him that I could not get out of bed and he’d have to fend for himself. He’s nearly fifteen, so this is not a major feat.

As I heard the back door close, I realized that I’d not kissed my son good-bye nor wished him a good day.

Within the hour, I had to wake my daughter up for school. While she too can get ready without my assistance, she has to be driven to school.  I threw on a pair of jeans, whatever pair of shoes I could find, and my coat. Yes I was wearing my pajama top and no, I did not put on a stitch of makeup.  We drove to school in silence because even the act of talking was a challenge.

I returned home, went back to bed and woke up a few hours later feeling remarkably better. I debated on whether a cup of coffee would be a wise move and ultimately decided it would. I slowly drank it for fear of returning to my previous state. I didn’t.

Within an hour or so I was well on my way to feeling better. Grateful beyond words, I started my work for the day. Then I got a surprise.

“Are u feeling better?” texted my son. I was over the moon. My son took his life in his hands and texted me while in school to see how I was doing. I responded with a “yes” and got a smiley face in return.

That single action – that tiny little text – turned my day around. You may be thinking this is not a big deal. If you are, then you don’t have a teenager at home. Teenagers, especially teenage boys, don’t think of others – they think of themselves (you remember your teen years right?).

When my son came home I gave him the biggest hug ever. I told him how much his thinking of me meant and how much I appreciated his text. He just smiled.

As parents, most of our words to our kids are things like, “Do your homework,” “Clean your room,” “Take out the trash.” Let’s not forget to use our words for praise and recognition for when the good stuff happens too.



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