Have you ever thought about the weight of your words?
As a homeschooling mother of a child with special needs, words mean a whole lot.
What words do you use to describe your child’s diagnosis?
What words do you use to describe your feelings toward it?
What words do you use to describe what others have to say about your child?
What words do you use to talk about your child to others?
What words do you use to explain why you’ve chosen to homeschool?
What words to you use to express your thoughts on and about the hard days?
What words do you use towards your child during a meltdown?
What words roll off your tongue when your significant other isn’t showing you the support you need on any particular day?
May the words of my mouth and the thoughts of my heart be pleasing to you, O Lord.
When you spend your days as the primary caregiver and educator of your children, it’s sometimes difficult to think pleasing thoughts and utter pleasing words. You sometimes snap back when you know better. You say hurtful things when you could just as easily have held back.
When someone doesn’t understand your choices, when a medical appointment leaves you frazzled, or when a person stares at your child one second too long, it’s difficult to remain gracious with your words.
It’s less about the “right words” to say than it is about how your words make others feel. It’s also about how they make you feel after you’ve voiced them.
I never feel proud. I never feel dignified or noble.
I remember that every second of every day, my child is learning from me. He’s learning how I respond to a stressful situation. He watches how I handle overwhelm. He also listens to how I speak to and about his father, family members, friends, and complete strangers.
What do I want him to learn from my words?
I hope he learns love, first and foremost. (“I love you, no matter what.”)
I hope he learns patience and understanding. (“I know you are frustrated right now. Let’s try this together.”)
I hope he learns kindness and gentleness. (“You worked hard and you are tired. Let’s take a break.”)
I hope he learns strength and resilience. (“You can do this. You are strong.”)
I also hope he learns that words cut through the heart. (“You will make it through this. I am here.”)
Some people make cutting remarks, but the words of the wise bring healing.
May is the month that mothers get honored for their tireless work. It is my hope that you don’t forget to honor yourself, honor your words, and choose to make your words honorable.