Confessions from a Nit-Picking Mama

Nit-picking: minute and usually unjustified criticism

Today I thought I’d share my recent self discovery. I have found myself “nit-picking” my littles. I seem to have my homeschool mindset on at all times. I find lessons in every moment.

My intentions and heart are all in the right place but my timing and over indulgence of the habit create anxiety in me and the Littles.

My children are extremely respectful and smart due to my educational narrations of life but they can never fully let their guard down. I don’t want that for them. I want them to have the freedom for their own self discoveries. I want them to not develop a fear of trying and allow them times to fall. If I never get out of the way then that can’t happen.

Once I noticed my bad habit I began a conscious effort to not direct the little instances.  No more, “Riles quit fidgeting” just because I want her to sit still. I understand there is appropriate times for sitting still but there is just the same time for being a wiggly, silly child. No more grammar corrections during non-school hours. No more, “Jett calm down” just because he is a rambunctious 8 year old boy. No more life lessons in every conversation they try to have with me. No more unnecessary don’t touch, be quiets, sit still, fix your clothes, put that away. I want the times I do correct them to be intentional and with value.

This purposeful neglect to correcting them is not out of laziness. It’s mama pulling her grip back a little to allow them to be children. I want them to know how to be real and cut loose. Not feel the need to put on fake persona’s whenever they are around their parents and other adults. The manners and intelligence are tools I’ve equipped them with and I now need to give them reasoning skills to use them based off of their personal experiences while it’s still a safe environment.

One day I won’t be there and I want them to understand making mistakes now while the mistakes are harmless. Embarrassing, humbling moments will happen in life and it’s important to know how to handle them.  I’m going to give a lot more grace, observe from the sidelines, and patiently trust I don’t pull my hair out trying not to correct the little things.

April Walker

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