Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Titus 2'sday: On Biting My Tongue

Titus 2'day, based on Titus 2:3-5, is my regular Tuesday installment where I share the great advice others have given me about parenting or about what I'm learning along the way. 

Sunday morning, I got to sleep in and I missed church.  I had been up until past 3 am between hosting a bachelorette party and finishing up birthday party details.  Hubby, however, decided to get up anyway and take Sweet Pea to church with him.  This was their second outing together in 12 hours, since he'd taken her on a daddy-daughter date the night before for pizza and "dancing."  (They listened to a band outside the restaurant, and Sweet Pea can't stop herself from dancing when someone drops a beat.  In fact, here's a video, just 'cuz it's cute.)

Anyway, they came home after church to pick me up and head to my mom's.  I hopped in the backseat next to my sweet daughter, glanced over, and chomped my big mouth shut.

Sweet Pea went to church dressed in a red plaid Christmas dress a size too big, with pink tights, no shoes and no headband.

You see, less than a week ago, my mom was telling me that I need to be easier on my husband as he learns how to be a dad.  She told me that just because he does something differently than I do it doesn't mean it's bad, and that I might be expecting him to read my mind.  He is an incredible dad; he takes such wonderful care of our little girl and thinks the world of her.  My mom told me that when we were little, my dad would sometimes get us ready for church or some other outing, and we would come downstairs wearing the oddest assortment of clothes she had ever seen.  She said she would get mad at him, and my dad couldn't see why she was upset; he thought we looked just beautiful.  She said that looking back, she should have just smiled and thanked him for getting us ready.

My husband is the same way.  He thinks Sweet Pea is just beautiful no matter what.  (And don't get me wrong, I do too!  I just really like her to wear adorable outfits with coordinating head wear and leggings and shoes.)  He would think she was perfect whether she was in a $100 matching Janie and Jack outfit or a paper sack.  Interestingly, he seems to feel the same about me, even though I roll my eyes at him all the time.

I'm glad that my mom gave me that advice.  It reminds me of advice another friend gave me recently as she was cutting my hair and I was complaining about who knows what related to something my husband did or didn't do.  She said, "Yes, but what was his intention?"

Oh.  His intention?  It's never to hurt me or harm me or mess up my day or make our baby look silly.  His intention is to take care of us and make sure our baby is dressed warmly on a chilly, early-fall morning.  His intention is to show us that he loves us.

So Sunday morning I bit my tongue and smiled.  Well, except five minutes later I told him the story my mom told me, and told him that I wanted to be grouchy at him but I wasn't, and then we laughed together.  But I think it still counts!  (And dear nursery ladies...thanks for being sweet about the way my kid looked, and for telling my husband that Sweet Pea's tights really were such a light pink that they were practically white!)  

What about you?  How can you tell you husband is a great dad?  What do you do to make sure you're not being too hard on him?


  1. This post made me laugh, because Matt will no longer dress our child. She had her photo shoot for the Down syndrome calendar, and Matt dressed her. And I changed her. (I mean, this is what they give new parents and stuff... I had to have her look good!)

    BUT despite not knowing how to dress a baby girl (and why would he, he has two brothers) my husband is an amazing dad. He can always make Ellie laugh and he plays with her and gets her all riled up... just like Dads are supposed to do.

    And PS. I love the new header!

  2. What great and helpful advice, Taylor. I think I've had the same interaction with Jake about little girl clothing. I've been quick to criticize when I should have been grateful. Thanks for the sweet reminder!

  3. Sandy Yagel8:45 PM

    I still remember my husband dressing our twin daughters one day.... even with the matching pink tights! He figured that he'd already "climbed the mountain" by getting all those tiny tiny buttons done and tying the bows, so by the time he got to the tights he just plopped them on their heads like bunny ears!! We laughed together!!

    I have found it much harder to watch him encourage jumping from daredevil heights that make my heart stop!! I've learned that Dads just play with children differently... and that's the point of having both a mom and a dad!!

    Those crazy moments have grown into his determination to have regular dates with all five of the children! So they clog their pores with cholesterol as they enjoy their breakfast dates with Dad.... but over those eggs and hash browns, spiritual turf has been won and a close relationship forged (a relationship that at times I have to admit that I've been jealous of) that continues to bind them to our hearts and home.

    So it's all a part of being a TEAM together in raising our children. Now if I were perfect, I suppose I'd have to become his Holy Spirit (or his mother) and tell him how things need to be done.... but that's not MY job description! Just as in our marriage, we each bring something different and we need each other, so too in parenting we each bring something that God knew was needed in our children's lives.

    Sandy Yagel


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