I pride myself in being a bit goofy! As a mother, I try to hide nuggets of my expectations of proper behavior, in silly sayings that my children can easily remember. Phrases that although serious, bring a smile to their faces. My husband calls them “Beckisms”. My hope is, one day they will teach them to their children, and they too will giggle and glean the truth that they teach.
One of my favorites is: You get what you get and you don’t throw a fit. I especially loved this one when my triplets were toddlers. Before I passed out a snack, served dessert, or handed them a toy to play with, I would repeat this in a silly sing-song way. It reminded them of my expectation of no whining, complaining, or comparing. They each knew that if I received any response other than thank you, their item would be taken away and not returned. I still say it once in a while, although they are fairly well trained now. However, occasionally I will overhear one of the kids repeat the words to a sibling or friend.
Another is: Treat a car like a National Park. Therefore, if you pack it in…you pack it out. I quickly noticed that in a matter of a few trips in my mommyvan, a ginormous amount of stuff accumulated. Everytime we got in the car, each child would bring 2 or 3 items. Yet, nobody carried anything out of the vehicle. Next trip, more stuff arrived, and none left. Hence, the need to take the big step and declare my van a National Park. Life in the mommyvan has been neater ever since.
One that always elicits a giggle is: Don’t put your feet where people put their “seats”. So often children like to walk on park benches, chairs, booths, etc. Then, an unsuspecting person comes along, sits their “seat” on the bench, and has a shoe print on their bum. This can be embarrassing! Or, the dirty shoes can render a chair unusable. Thus, the need for this “Beckism”.
Still another is: If you drop something pick it up…if you finish something throw it away…if you go to the potty flush it! I think this is self explanatory. I am your mother, not your servant. However, the last part is of extreme importance. Nobody, wants to walk into an unflushed potty, or 3. Yep, it routinely happens and I repeat these words often.
One of the most important is…Words are like popcorn, once they pop you cannot go back. So often we forget the power of our words. We say things before we fully think through how they will effect another. Once they are uttered, they cannot be retracted. Yes, you can apologize. Yet, you cannot make the words disappear. A good reason to learn to think before you speak.
Lastly…Try it you’ll like it…and if you don’t…oh well! I want my children to experience life. I do not want fear or preconceived notions to hold them back from something that they may really enjoy. Yet, I realize there are things I have tried and I really don’t like. Things like liver, brussel sprouts, cod, and peas. It’s ok if someone serves them to me. I eat a bit to be gracious. I would never pick them for myself. However, I do not want my kids to live their whole life assuming they do not like something, only to learn later that they love it, and could have enjoyed many more years of its deliciousness. I think this “Beckism” applies to so much more of life than just food.