One of the things I started doing was asking my daughter how I can improve as a parent. I wrote about the practice in my other blog. (Click to go to the blog post)
Here is what happened:
Every couple of months, I sit down with Sabrina and ask her how I can be a better mom to her or what I can improve as mother. She takes this to heart and today i asked her the same question:
Liv: Sabrina how can I improve as your mom?
Sabrina: I think you should try to have a better attitude?
Liv: (really? my daughter is telling me I have a bad attitude? Is this really happening?) Okay, what do you mean by i should have a better attitude? What does that look like?
Sabrina: I think you should forgive people faster! Like remember when it took you so long to forgive Dad even when he said sorry?
How humbling!! This incident happened over three months ago. What happened was, I was talking to Ruy about something and then he received a text message. He then spaced out and started replying to the message on his phone (which took about one to two minutes), then he put his phone away and was quiet for around 5 minutes before asking why I was so quiet and if something was wrong. I was so pissed that I kept quiet. Then he kept bugging me and I finally told him that he was so rude and that he actually forgot we were in the middle of a conversation. I felt very justified about being offended. I felt even more justified at not being forgiving right away even after he apologized. Sabrina was in the car with us when it happened (and no, no shouting or cursing was going on. It was a very quiet and civilized discussion despite my irritation) and I didn't realize she was watching what I was doing. She soon butted in and said I should be more forgiving. YIKES. It took me five minutes to accept Ruy's apology and Sabrina still couldn't forget it. I apologized again to Sabrina yesterday and told her I'd try to be more forgiving.
We don't often realize what our kids see in us. And more importantly, we don't get to choose what they remember when they see us. It's a wonderful reminder to be more mindful of how we act around our kids.