One advantage of the lockdown is the opportunity it has availed us to spend more time with our kids since we get to work from home.
I want to talk about phrases or expressions I have heard our kids use very often during this lockdown. In the past, I thought they said these things once a while but to my amazement, the 8 and 5-year-old have gotten so used to using these expressions even when I think it’s unnecessary. I started taking the opportunity to share important life lessons with them. Here are some of them:
“I didn’t mean to”: Kids will spill water or bump into things and then quickly say “I didn’t mean to”. Understandably, we all make mistakes, but once I noticed they had become so used to making that comment, I had to address it.
If you do not act intentionally, you may end up doing things you did not plan to do. Don’t walk around the house with your face covered with blanket and expect not to bump into things. “I didn’t mean to” may not suffice in the outside world for mistakes you make.
Learning point: Your actions have consequences whether good or bad. Think before you act.
“I’m sorry”: I observed my children were beginning to misuse “I’m sorry”. Sometimes, they even say it before you determine if they’re wrong or right. I figured they were saying it as a ‘let’s move on strategy’. I’m still having to explain to them not to say “I’m sorry” without establishing their innocence if they’re not guilty.
Learning point: It’s good to establish your innocence (at least) even if you have to say “I’m sorry”.
Learning point: If you think before you act or speak, you are likely to have fewer needs to say “I’m sorry”.
“I can do it if I want to”: My younger son makes this comment the most. I always tell him “no, you can’t do it if you want to”. As he grows older, I will continue to emphasize that rules are binding on you as a member of a family, a school, etc. More so, as you grow into an adult, there will be laws binding on you as a member of the society.
Learning point: You can’t do anything just because you feel like it.
“It’s mine”: I’ll be impressed if your children don’t use this sentence as much as mine do. Initially, I thought it was coming from a selfish place. However, I’ve noticed it is more of a marking territory strategy or possession instinct. “You can use it, but first, it’s mine”. So I tell them, it’s okay to know what belongs to you, but don’t forget to always share.
Learning point: Know what belongs to you, but learn to share.
“That’s not fair”: If you think one kid is right and you take sides, the other will most likely say “that’s not fair”. It’s never fair when they are not the ones being favored, haha. I continue to emphasize that life is not fair. The earlier you accept that, the better.
Learning point: Life is not fair. It never was, it isn’t now and will never be.
“That’s so funny”: Just like their dad and myself, my kids easily find humor in a lot of things. It gladdens my heart. They laugh a lot and will often exclaim “that’s so funny!” So much, sometimes I’m wondering what is funny about a bird jumping from one tree to another? But truly, we all should learn to see humor in simple things. Life is not that serious.
Learning point: Laugh, Laugh, Laugh. Laughter is good medicine.
“I love you”: The fact that my husband and I say “I love you” to each other and to our children a lot has rubbed off on them. Children are very likely to pick up words you say to others or them. They can’t give what they don’t have. I’m glad my kids freely express the love they have been showered with.
Learning point: Love makes the world go round. Love, say it, show it.
What phrases or comments do your kids, nieces, nephews, wards etc. use very often? Have you been able to use it to teach them a life lesson? Feel free to share below.
Thanks for reading and remember to share.