Itta Be Fine

Have you ever had one of those days that left you feeling down, really truly bogged down in the mire of what we people can be and do when we are not at our best? A day of seeing how folks can bring each other down with their words and their actions and their lack of both? How the brokenness of the past can come to the surface years later?

Last Thursday was one such day for me. The details aren’t important to anyone but me, but what happened next is something I hope to always remember.

My little fella, who at some point during this pandemic grew to be taller than me (one of his goals, by the way), has a habit of coming up to hug me. At first I thought he was doing it to measure his height against mine–and I don’t doubt that sometimes that’s what it was. But now that there is no doubt that he has SEVERAL inches on me, he still comes up and hugs me and gives me a peck on my forehead. PRECIOUS. I think he might still love me despite us both going through age appropriate changes *ahem* at the same time and both of us having many “not likable” moments, sometimes side by side. *sigh*

So last Thursday, he came up in the middle of “one of those days” and hugged me and said, “Mama, in the words you say a lot–‘Itta be fine.'”

BLESS.

I came home and cried that night. I say a lot of things, many not so grace filled, much to my chagrin. The fact that this is what he has heard me say and that it has stuck with him such that he brought it back to me…..I am filled with thankful tears.

It will be fine.

And somehow in that moment, I believed him. Because despite the best efforts of the world (and myself too sometimes), he sees the good. The positive. The potential. The settling down and cream rising to the top.

It will be fine.

I hear my Mama sometimes when I’m talking to my children. Sometimes that made me cringe to realize it, but now I smile. She gave me good words to soak in and say {mostly}. That this is what he has taken away from all the many things that I have said–good and not so good–I am so thankful.

They are listening, y’all. And it’s not just the toddlers and preschoolers who listen and delightfully, embarrassingly, amusingly, innocently repeat what they hear us adults saying. It’s our preteens, our teens, and even our young adults. They hear us. They repeat it. Sometimes without even processing what they are saying. And sometimes it’s more harmful than good. It’s not fine.

Tonight I’m thankful for a reminder that, despite having teenagers, I need to be mindful of the words I put out into the world. I don’t get to speak my mind freely without the consequences and potential of those thoughts being expressed by those whom I am raising. With every thought I share, I’m loading up a weapon or a lantern. These words can and usually are repeated–and they can tear down or build up.

May I remember that when strife was in our midst, my little fella chose the lantern instead of the weapon. I give thanks for that and for the example he has set for me. Challenge accepted, buddy. I will do better with my words, so that it will be fine.

Love to all.