“It’s not as (fill in the blank here) as I thought it would be.”

I can’t tell you how often my son says this, or how much it’s started to bother me. At first it seemed benign enough, almost like the automatic ‘sorry’ after I’ve chastised him for whatever reason.

But now it seems as though it’s thrown out no matter what we’re doing. On vacation it was the afternoon cruise. “That wasn’t as interesting as I thought it would be.” On our picnic last night before the movie, it was the fried chicken. “This chicken isn’t as juicy as I thought it would be.” Yesterday while grocery shopping at Costco it was the free sample of a chocolate mint. “That mint flavor wasn’t as strong as I thought it would be.”

I find myself getting angry when he says this now, because it seems like nothing is ever good enough. To hear him tell it, there should always be more, whether we’re talking excitement level or mint flavor, and I find myself at a loss of how to respond.

Because if I lose my patience, like I did at Costco, and get after him for never seeming to be satisfied with anything I worry that I’m teaching him to stifle his thoughts and settle for a life that just doesn’t excite him. And what parent would ever want their child to just meh their way through life?

But if I encourage him in his constant criticism and judgment of every single everything, then I’m not really serving him well as a parent either. Because not every mint will be the mintiest and not every piece of chicken will be the most mouthwatering and not every activity on vacation will be blow-your-socks-off amazing, but I still want him to be grateful for the mint, the chicken and the experience. I want him to know that the everyday of life is just as beautiful as the extraordinary, if we choose to see it that way.

Inspired by Stream of Consciousness Sunday (#SOCSunday). The concept: set a timer, write for five minutes, publish. Brain dump style, no editing. Publish. Share. Link up at Jana’s Thinking Place and check back there for next week’s theme. No theme this week….just write.