My daughter is 2 years old (see the above picture) and appears to have inherited my (lack of) coordination. In the summer, her legs are scuffed up messes, and we’ve yet to make it through a day without a bonked head or stubbed toe.
As a parent, there are few things more frustrating than when your child hurts and you can’t do a thing about it. Short of padding McKenna with bubble wrap, I can’t prevent every scrape and bruise.
But we’ve recently discovered a trick with McKenna that drastically shortens how long she frets over her new boo-boo. Here’s what it looks like in action:
We tailgated at a baseball game last week, a situation that sends you on high alert when you’ve got a toddler. Not only are you hanging out in a parking lot where plenty of cars are cruising by, but you’ve got a tiny-but-still-very-hot grill, and (if you’re with my brother-in-law) a washers game going. While I was busy making sure McKenna didn’t touch the grill that looked like a toy or get conked in the head with a metal disc, she climbed onto one of the rickety lawn chairs and the whole thing toppled over.
She was more scared than hurt, and after about 30 seconds of holding her while she cried and making sure she wasn’t bleeding anywhere, I said to her, “McKenna, should we check on the chair and make sure it’s okay too?”
The tears instantly vanished as McKenna went over to the chair, patted it, and declared it “okay too.” Then she scampered off to the bag of chips.
It occurred to me as I watched her that there’s tremendous healing power in turning our thoughts outward. When I’m feeling down or discouraged, one of the quickest ways to snap myself out of it is by finding someone else to serve. Or praying for someone else who’s in a similar situation. I see it demonstrated in McKenna daily—caring for others is far more satisfying, productive, and healing than obsessing over my own hurts and insecurities.
Have you found this to be true as well?