Wednesday, July 27, 2011

{What to be is up to me and I choose . . .}

When my kids were little there were actually times that they were unhappy.  So sad, I know.  They've actually been in some really bad moods before as well.  Time is a great cure and they would be smiling again . . .

I did discover one thing.  I could not change their feelings for them.  

I could offer comfort.  I could choose to be cheerful myself.  I could not change them.

I started playing a game with them.
"What to be is up to me and I choose . . ." I would often say, " . . . to be happy!"
Then, I would have them reply, "What to be is up to me and I choose . . . . . to be in a bad mood."
Great response.  My game wasn't over.

"I'm sorry you've chosen to be in a bad mood. Since I chose to be happy, I'm going to sing a song.  What would you like to choose?"  They often chose to be in a bad mood again.

You have no idea how many times I've played this game.

They are actually really happy kids but we all have our moments.

I would continue the game and help them realize the consequences of their choices.  It was so important to me to help them realize that they could control their emotions.  They could choose to be happy!  There are so many other emotions and actions to choose as well - I wanted them to choose or "live" with intention.

Sometimes life makes it easier to choose happiness . . .

 . . . sometimes, it doesn't.

Trying new things isn't always easy either!

{They HAD to try Green Eggs & Ham}

When they were happy, I would let them know that I noticed they were happy.
"Great choice!  I'm glad you're choosing to be happy."

Going to a foreign country. By yourself.  At sixteen.
(Well, without a family member.  This was the airport farewll . . .Dominican Republic humanitarian trip)

That might be a case for nerves but not when you choose to be brave . . .

I wanted them to learn that they could choose to be anything!

I was thinking about our little "choosing game" today.
I discovered a few things.

* We don't always have to choose over and over . . . there are some things we can choose once and stick
   with it.
* We aren't confined to one category . . . smart, pretty, clever, or funny.
   We're a lot more interesting than that!

So, why didn't I like this girl?

I started this process SOOOO many years ago.  This process of "becoming me" . . . this isn't really new.  The new thing is that I said it out loud! I've been carrying this battle from year to year.

I just finally realized that it doesn't have to be a forever kind of project.  These insecure feelings can end.
Who knew?  So, what to be is up to me and I choose . . . so many wonderful things!

My sweet friend, Melanie, shared this lovely quote . . .
"I've always liked the time before dawn because there's no one around to remind me who I'm supposed to be, so it's easier to remember who I am."

Thanks, Melanie!  I love it.  Tomorrow's plan is to wake up early and enjoy the time before dawn.  I think it will make it easier to remember who I am all day.