My son, Farmer Boy, had accidentally made some marks on the wall with a toy (he was using the toy to turn on the light switch) and instead of telling me about it, waited for me to discover it. When I did find it (at bedtime that night) I told him we would discuss it in the morning, but that as soon as he noticed something making marks, he should stop (there were a plethora of scrapes) and that he needs to tell me.
I found a note laying in the hallway a few minutes later that Farmer Boy wrote, calling himself two words that are not allowed in my house (I’ll give you a hint: They rhyme with numb and cupid). He had written the note himself by way of apology.
I have never met a child who is as hard on himself.
I called him into my room to have a talk, whereupon I embarked on one of those lectures I tend to give that last too long, contain far too many words and I never know if the message is being received. I was trying to explain that all people make mistakes all the time, even grown ups, and at the end of the conversation I had him look in the mirror and say to him self “I made a mistake. I forgive myself. I am wonderful. Mommy loves me no matter what.”
Imagine how I felt to find this letter waiting for me when I went to bed: