Raising kids is hard. We are not perfect and we all make mistakes. When my kids were growing up, I tried my best to be a good dad but there were days when I know I didn't do the job as well as I could have. I would have what I called a "bad Dad day." Those were the days when I didn't handle things properly and didn't have the patience to teach and really listen to what my kids were saying and needing. We get tired, but we have to remember that kids did not ask to be brought into the world and we are responsible for EVERYTHING they need. It is our job and sometimes we fail at it. The key is learning where you failed and trying not to repeat the same mistake.

Yesterday I came home, and my grandson Zander was at the kitchen table coloring. He asked me to please sit down and join him; I was beat and just wanted to sit quietly for a minute but how could I resist coloring a ninja turtle with him. We had a blast and then I snuck off into my room to be alone for a few minutes. Then I heard Zander knock on the door and ask for me to come out. I asked him to just give me minute, and I would be out and for him to just go away for a second. When I came out a few minutes later, I found him in a flooded kitchen. He had tried to get some water from the dispenser in the fridge and did not shut off the spigot. It drained all over the floor! I told him how mad I was at what he had done and sat him in the corner and chewed him out. He cried and said he was sorry, but I made him sit there a while. In that time, I realized I was the one who was bad. He called for me and I was too wrapped up in myself to see what he wanted. He probably didn't know how to turn it off and was looking for help. Then I was mad at ME! I forgave myself but still feel the need to play a little harder with him today. I could have avoided all of the wasted emotion if I had just listened. Sometimes we need to shut our mouths and minds off and just listen. The world will tell you what you need if you open your ears.