the power of an example

We've all heard it before. Be a good example, you never know who's watching. And every once in awhile we see the "results" of being that example but not usually. Even when you have kids, you often don't see how they copy you and your mannerisms. It's normal to you, so it's normal for them to do it (unless of course when your toddler yells out "CRAP" or something of the sort -hopefully nothing worse-, something a child should not be doing). But I have really started to see just how young you can be to be an example and just how young you really can be to follow it (or just copy it).

The other day Reganne (now 17 months) dropped a toy on her toe. She came whimpering over to me saying "ah right, ah right" in her sweet little voice. Then she lifted up her foot for me to kiss. After my all healing kiss, she ran back to her toys. She's never done that before. Who does? Marryn. ALL THE TIME. Every bump, scrape, hit, whatever, she runs to us saying she's all right, but she needs a kiss. Then presto, good as new. (It'll be so sad when that kiss doesn't heal all.) But as I watched the girls this morning, I kept thinking of all these little things that Reganne does as a result of watching Marryn. She loves to "dress up" now. She brings me clothes (of course not the ones from the dress up basket, but ones from Marryn's closet or drawers) and wants me to put them on, (or finds a hat, usually Marryn's beanies, and puts it on herself) then she turns in circles singing "I know" over and over (as in I know you, I walked with you once upon a dream - the song from Sleeping Beauty). Now, I don't do this, who does? Yep, Marryn. One of the funniest is when Marryn wants a cup of milk. We pour her some milk in her sippy cup and now who wants some? Reganne. Only Reganne won't drink milk. But we still have to pour her some (I guess I'm really hoping all this wasted milk will eventually turn her into a milk drinker, but if not, I don't blame her, I don't like milk myself). So we pull out another sippy cup and fill it half up. Sometimes we even add a little chocolate. Marryn gets so excited, so, so does Reganne. And she'll carry that cup around with her, taking little sips here and there, but never actually drinking it.

Now all this good example stuff it great, but what about the other end. Reganne, our mellow child started throwing herself on the floor in full out fits very early on. Way too early. The other day Marryn got pretty upset with me because I turned off the TV. As she jumped up and down screaming, I glanced over at Reganne, her eyes all big and engrossed in what Marryn was doing. Great. Another learning moment. We've been trying to explain to Marryn that she needs to be good so Reganne will be good and for the most part, she's so sweet, even to Reganne. But she is only 3. Her "wants" can quickly overpower her.

So what's the point of my blabbing on and on? Nothing really, except that I'm learning what other mothers of siblings already know. Each child learns "stuff" quicker and earlier on than the one before, all by the power of example.

My biggest fear with our next child is all the physical stuff. I've always heard how boys are so much more "physically inclined" than girls. And now this little boy will have two older siblings showing him all this jumping and climbing and stuff that they can do, but he shouldn't, but will anyways. I guess the good thing is that I'll be even less nervous than I was with Marryn, and then with Reganne (who did climb up stuff way earlier than Marryn...).

Reganne had to dress up too.

And play with the butterfly net.
And yes, that is milk in her cup. And no, she did not drink it.

1 happy thoughts:

The Michel Happenings said...

Kelsey...hey it is Kristy, I just found your blog. Yes, kids sure do pick up on things earlier when they have siblings to show them the way! Oh it is so fun though, but yes indeed it can be scary. I am so excited that you are having a little boy in July! I am sad that you guys are moving..I always thought we would have fun hanging out, and our kids would have fun too! Give me a call if you want sometime and we can let our kids play.