The memory is a vivid one: my toddler yelling, “No Stella. Go home Stella,” as the dog circles her high chair.
“Stella just wanted to say hello to you,” I tell her.
“Okay,” she replied.
In that moment, I saw myself. How I’ve often been annoyed with our furry baby in the past. Telling her to “go home” to her area each time she placed her head in my lap or leaned on my legs underneath the table.
That moment forced me to look at my own self in a way that I hadn’t. It wasn’t until I saw an undesirable behavior of mine manifested in my little one that I realized I needed to make some changes.
During the time I became pregnant and had given birth, I stopped loving on our dog the way I did before. I stopped extending the grace I once did when we brought her home, excited to have her as a part of our family. Instead I complained, because I was tired of always cleaning up dog hair, or because she had chewed a number of itty bitty baby things. But just like the rest of us, all she really wanted was to be loved. (I’m happy to report I’ve been much more patient and attentive to my furry baby these days.)
Our children are like mirrors. In looking at them, there are times when see our own selves.
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