I tend to think of myself as a fairly easy going person. In fact, on a weekend retreat for ladies from my church, we did a study on personalities. The one we did used 4 different personality types called Sanguine, Melancholy, Choleric, and Phlegmatic. Most people are high in one of these and a blend of the others mixed in. Well, I took the little test/survey and came out extremely high as a Phlegmatic. If you or someone you know is a Phlegmatic, these are some of the traits you may notice: peacemaker, avoids conflict, easy going, team player, gets along well with others, calm, serene, etc. As a Mom, I have actually been called “cool, calm, and collected,” and other such names. Sometimes I probably am those things, but most definitely NOT all the time. I was reminded of this the other day when a little incident occured at breakfast–someone spilled the milk. If you’re a parent, you know exactly what I’m talking about. It’s not always milk, it can be juice or any other beverage. For some reason it seems to always happen within hours after I have cleaned my floors. Compared to other things I have had to clean up over the last decade, milk really isn’t that big of a deal. However, and I really can’t explain why, this irks me to no end. I can be nice, loving, calm Mommy, but when that glass tips, I morph into someone I am quite ashamed of. There have been times when I have yelled so that they end up in a bout of tears over spilling something.(And I end up in tears over being such a meanie.) Several months back my husband accidentally spilled a huge glass of something at dinnertime right in front of all the kids. I have never seen 5 little heads swivel towards my direction so quickly! They were all waiting for me to explode, which is usually what I do when they spill something. Instead I kept my reaction to myself, giving my husband a bit of grace for a very unintended accident.
Now, back to this morning. Can you guess who spilled the milk? You guessed it–it was me. Luckily it didn’t happen in front of all the kids, but it did happen in front of my oldest two. One of them piped up, “Mom, YOU spilled it this time!” and then they both laughed at me. So, I cooly and calmly cleaned up my mess from a very unintended accident. And gave myself a bit of grace as well. A challenge for myself is to give my children grace when they do something unintentional. We all make mistakes, that’s why they call them accidents, right? Plus, there’s no use crying over spilled milk.