We all know that our little ones are sponges and seem to pick up everything, except for the chores you want them to do- that's when selective listening usually kicks in.
Whether they're parroting a phrase you just said or noticing how you adjust your hair, our kids look up to us and tend to copy everything we do, good or bad.
As parents this is a lot of pressure. We are human too and make mistakes. We don't want our kids to pick up our bad habits or overhear something they're not supposed to repeat, but things happen.
For one Missouri mom, she got a wake up call about what her daughter is learning from her after visiting a Target store and trying on swim suits.
Brittney Johnson and her 4-year-old daughter Payton spent the day together at the mall. They chatted with a barista at Starbucks, rode the carousel and enjoyed dinner together. Then they headed to Target to shop for a new swim suit.
In the change room, Brittney came to a realization when she was snapping a photo to send to a friend.
“See that sweet baby girl in the corner? With half a dress on and one of the bikini tops I had picked out?” Johnson wrote. “I stopped for a second to see what she would say and when she turned to the mirror, she said ‘Wow I just love cheetah print! I think I look beautiful! Do you think I look beautiful too?!’”
In that moment, this mom said she realized the impact her words and actions have on her daughter.
“I tell her that she is beautiful every single day,” Johnson wrote. “She is kind walking through the mall, because I tell her she is kind everywhere else. She is polite at the order counter because she hears me when I’m polite to strangers everywhere. She gives compliments to people she doesn’t know because she loves how it feels when she hears them.”
Applying this realization to parenting, she added. “When we are in a dressing room, with swimsuits of all God forsaken things, there is a split moment when I have the power to say ‘wow I have really gotten fat this year’ OR ‘wow I love this coral color on me!’ And those are the words burned into my daughters brain.”
“And as my daughter gets older, and she faces judgement and criticism, I will always remind her that the girls who look the prettiest in a two piece, or a body suit, or a freaking Snuggie, are the ones who are happy. Because that’s ALL that matters. And I want her to look at herself every single day and say ‘Oh wow! I think I look beautiful!’ because EVERY girl deserves to feel that," she concludes.
As a mom to a daughter myself, this really gave me a wake-up call! What do you think?