Do you remember this nursery rhyme?
Three little kittens they lost their mittens, and they began to cry,
“Oh mother dear, we sadly fear that we have lost our mittens.”
“What! Lost your mittens, you naughty kittens!
Then you shall have no pie.”
“Meeow, meeow, meeow, now we shall have no pie.”
The three little kittens they found their mittens,
And they began to cry,
“Oh mother dear, see here, see here
For we have found our mittens.”
“Put on your mittens, you silly kittens
And you shall have some pie”
“Meeow, meeow, meeow,
Now let us have some pie.”
I was reading this to Catina one day a few years ago and it hit me that its not good to lose something but at times it will happen. We will lose items because we are imperfect and life circumstances impede. I’ve always beat myself up when I lost something. This is something I am trying to change. I want to stop speaking harsh words to myself about a mistake I have made. I would like to move on quicker from this emotional cycle I put myself in.
This past summer we lost one of June’s hearing aids and it has been quite the ride, with it taking forever to get a new one, insurance approvals, switching audiologists, and then once she got her new aid refusing to wear it. It has been six months and she still refuses to wear her left aid. At times the old voice creeps up and says “How stupid of you! How could you lose such an important item?!” June was in a grocery cart and at some point the aid fell out or was pulled out and thrown. We don’t know what happened and there really is no way for me to keep my eyes glued to her aids and shop at the same time. I continue to remind myself of the truth that these things will happen. It’s evident that at some point June will lose her hearing aids and most likely more than once. I want to teach my kids that we need to be responsible as we can be but that things will happen, but why can’t I learn this lesson myself?
Thursday I went in for Ada’s one month check-up and forgot the chart that I so meticulously kept of her feedings and removings (poops and pees!). HOW COULD I FORGET SOMETHING THAT I USE EVERY HALF HOUR?! All in all it really didn’t matter. Ada has now been declared at her birth weight and we will continue as-is for a little while longer with added calories to my breastmilk. Again, the tape in my head began to play about how careless I am. Right before the doctor left the room he turned to me and said “There are two great things going for Ada. One, she has a great family! Two, she is very healthy.” Forgetting the chart really wasn’t a big deal but for a moment I was letting it consume me.
Hard lesson to learn and even harder to teach! Thoughts?
I know you get what I’m about to say, but it’s one of those things that doesn’t hurt to hear again: I don’t think this is really about losing things. I believe it’s about allowing yourself to have a misstep. I know how forgiving you are of other people when they have moments like this, but you don’t give yourself the same grace.
This reminds me of Learning To Tell Myself The Truth by William Backus. He makes some great points about the tapes and images we play in our minds, barely even realizing their presence. The challenge is to replace them, and the lies they create, with Truth. It’s unbelievably hard, but critical. (I wish I was speaking from experience but you know I’m a huge culprit of the negative tape.)
I think it goes without saying that practically speaking, you almost never lose or misplace things. If we were running a lemonade stand I would definitely elect you to carry the cash. I think pretty much anyone who knows you would say the same thing. But I don’t think your track record really matters; what’s important is that you let God’s Truths permeate and give yourself the same grace you give everyone else!