I was doing my parental duty yesterday by nagging my four year old about the state of her room. It looked like someone threw a grenade loaded with toddler underwear, every dress she owns, bits of paper and little glittery stick-on earrings that end up stuck everywhere from the bottom of my sock to the dogs butt.
This is how the conversation went:
“Come on Sofia. This room is ridiculous! You’ve gotta keep it cleaner than this!”
And then, with her big green and grey eyes turned on me she replies in her most matter of fact way, “Well mom, your room isn’t clean and I want my room to be like yours.”
Yep. She did. She threw down a gigantic 4-year-old-going-on-16 Truth Bomb. Right to my face. The fact that she went there…and that she was right, totally caught me off guard. I think I actually sputtered. And then I frantically tried to think of a response that was both parental sounding and avoiding the fact that she was right. The inner 4 year old in me would respond with something like “NO! YOUR room’s a mess!”
My response was a lot of start and stop and ended up sounding something like this. “Well Sofia…you’re right. My room is a bit messy, but I try to keep it clean. And its important to try all the time, even when you don’t want to. You have to take care of the things that your given.” Or something like that.
Try as I might, I can’t disregard her words. Or mine. It was a nice reminder that I gotta keep my parental expectations in check with what and how I’m living. They’re watching and learning and it matters.
Those 4 year olds though…