Friday, March 23, 2007

Just Like Me

"Lord, I want to be just like you - cause she wants to be just like me." These words, adapted from a song by Philips, Craig and Dean, really speak to me at this moment, after having just put my daughter, Abby, to bed. As I child I loved books and I loved to read. Indeed, my girl is more likely to cuddle with two books at night than she is a beloved, stuff animal. Her love of books reminds me of a little girl I used to know quite well.
As has become our routine, I read a story to Abby. Then she grabs the book-light, confiscated from her brother, shuts of the lights, crawls into bed, and reads me a book, or two. At four, she is not really reading, but giving a delightful account, often her own version, of the story by reading the pictures. Tonight as she is reading me to sleep while I rock in the chair, I hear the words, "blah, blah, blah". "What's that? It doesn't say blah, blah, blah!?" "I know mom, but I couldn't see that page so I said blah, blah, blah - just like you do," and we both laughed, and had a case of the giggles that brushed away all signs of sleepiness. Ah, yes, my daughter is truly becoming a reflection of me.
You see, the other night as I was reading the "Little Engine That Could" for the fourth night in a row, I inadvertently substituted "blah, blah, blah" for the repetitive part "...for all the good little girls and good little boys on the other side of the mountain so they will have good food to eat, and toys to play with." Or however, it goes. After many nights and page after page of the same sentence, I apparently could handle it no longer, and blurted out "blah, blah, blah" while reading the story. "Mom, it doesn't say that?" "What?" "Blah, blah, blah." "Did I say that?" "Yes, while you were reading...." OOPS!! I hadn't even realized it.
Although this story is humorous, it is a sobering reminder of how much our children look up to us. They watch every move we make, listen to every word - even when we don't realize what we are saying. They are growing up to be reflections of who we are as adults. When you look in the mirror what do you see? Would you like to see your son or daughter grow up to be that person you see in the mirror? Think about that for a moment. I know I am.
At this very moment I am keenly aware of how important my behavior is. How I treat others. What I say. How I drive (oh yes, Abby is very much the back seat driver and in tune with how I drive and not afraid to criticize), and wow - come to think of it - what I snack on! I guess I better eat more apples and keep those chocolates hidden until she's asleep, because afterall, I don't want her to grow up just like me! As a mom, I would like my daughter to grow up a better reflection of who I am. I guess it is never too late to change and become a better person. How is your reflection today?

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