One of the things I love the most about being a grandmother is the very personal, very special bond that is built between me and a little grandchild. I am learning that one of the marks of that bond is our own little subset of language.
For instance, I’ve been reading books to my granddaughter, Aria, almost from the moment she was born. But one day we discovered something new. I told her a story about myself, from when I was a little girl.
Aria was delighted and asked for more.
The next time I saw her, she said, “Tell me a story from your mouth.” I had never heard that particular request before but went to the cupboard to pick out a book to read.
“No, Gigi, tell me a story from your mouth!”
“But, Aria, what is a story from my mouth?”
“A story about you when you were little.” (Imagine her answers with a toddler’s lisp!)
“Oh, that kind of story!” And we were off with me remembering stories from my childhood – stories that would interest a toddler and Aria listening closely and endlessly asking for more.
I’ve told her stories about my grandparents and about my brothers and sisters and about Christmases past and on and on and on.
Now Aria is five years old and we’ve discovered a new category of “stories from my mouth”. These are any kind of a story that I tell without a book. Our favorites are Little Red Riding Hood and The Three Little Pigs. I’ve told these two stories countless times, but she never gets tired of them. Perhaps because each time I add more and more details and the stories get longer and more dramatic each time. And yes, the stories are rather violent but in our telling grandma never gets eaten and the wolf always gets his just desserts.
How long will Aria ask for stories from my mouth? I don’t know, but I’ll enjoy it while she does. And maybe, I’ll be able to convince her little brother Vince to listen. And maybe when we go to visit Lucy and her little brother, Jon, they’ll be ready for a story from Gigi’s mouth.
But always, those storytelling times will be one of my sweetest memories of grandmothering my little people.
Today’s post originated from a Five Minute Friday writing prompt. Click here to read more or to join in with your own story.
Can I just say it? The word “should” is not one of my all-time favorite words.
It can stir up unpleasant, shamed, not-enough feelings. I tell myself I should. My family tells me I should. My co-workers tell me I should. My friends tell me I should. The world around me tells me I should.
And along with the word “should” come a few other words – “but you probably won’t.”
I have a to-do list for this weekend and it includes things I should do. A few of those “should do” items are troublesome to me because there is a voice in the back of my mind speaking to me about them.
“You should do that. Yes, you should, but you know that you put that on your to-do list last weekend and it didn’t get done then. What makes you think you’ll get it done this weekend? Why even bother putting it on your list?”
I’ve listened to that “probably won’t” accusation a few too many times. Enough times that it begins to scare me away from doing what I want to do and from doing what I am gifted and called to do.
I’ve listened to that accusation often enough that it has tainted the word “should” for me.
Instead of the source of condemnation, the word “should” can be an invitation to an adventure.
I love to craft so I should make some time in my weekends to make something beautiful.
It would be good for me to lose some weight so I should experiment with new recipes for low-fat foods.
Reading great books is good for my brain so I should see what my library has to offer.
Writing is a way for me to reach out to my world so I should look for ways to improve my writing.
God has given me a wonderful life so I should enjoy it and share it as much as I can.
Suddenly “should” is transformed from a shame-producing word into a peek into what could be just around the corner – from something I avoid to something I anticipate.
What about you? Are you letting the voice of our enemy accuse you with what you should do? Or are you letting God invite you into discovering the excitement of what you should do?
Today along with the other writers of Five Minute Friday at katemotaung.com I’m writing about the prompt word “should”. Come take a look at what the others are saying about this week’s prompt word.