Mom, You are Stealing Auntie’s Plant

Mom, You are Stealing Auntie’s Plant

kindergarten artworkStill remember the post on Children See, Children Do? Through the time I spent with my niece and nephews, I had witnessed countless time how they had always tried to imitate their parents’ actions. My niece would often wear her mother’s shoes and pretend to be shopping or marketing. And ever since she starts school, she has become the ‘teacher’ to her two brothers at home. As for my nephews, they imitated their father by driving their imaginary cars around the house.

More often than not, we found their actions funny and they never failed to bring smiles to us. All these acts have been more amusing than bad so far.

However, just a few day ago, my sister shared with me something which left a deep impression in me; children, they are really watching us. Whether we like it or not, they are not only watching but doing what we are doing too. To some extent, what she has shared with me is quite disturbing.

Allow me to share what happened. My sister has been making unsuccessful attempts to grow money plants in her house. All the money plants didn’t last for long so far. A recent one was still blooming about a month back. But two weeks ago when I was at her place, it seemed that the money plant was reduced to a few leave. Not a beautiful sight at all.

Sometimes I wonder too, why some people seem to be able to make anything they grow bloom and some have no luck at all. My sister’s neighbour seems to have that magical touch; the money plant outside her house is blooming beautifully. So my sister decided to ‘borrow’ or rather cut a part of her neighbour’s money plant to try to grow in her house.

Well … she should have just asked for permission right? She didn’t. And she did it in front of her 5 years old daughter and twin 3 years old son. A BIG mistake! The moment my sister cut out a part of her neighbour’s money plant, her daughter asked, “Mom, why are you stealing Auntie’s money plant?” My sister said, “I’m not stealing. I cannot ask for Auntie’s permission because she is not around.” Brilliant answer? BIGGER mistake! Her daughter said, “It’s stealing if you do not ask for permission.” And yes, she is 5 years old.

A moment of rude awakening. My sister was dumbfounded! Mistake number 1: She should have just asked for permission to cut part of the plant and yes, my niece was right that ‘taking without asking is stealing.’ Mistake number 2: My sister should have admitted that she did the wrong thing and should not have tried to cover up.

This is definitely something which we do not want our children to pick up. Aren’t we supposed to be the one to tell them about life’s lessons? And yet we are re-learning these lessons from them. Their innocence and untainted eyes have taught us the values which we once knew but may have abandoned in the process of growing up.

Children are definitely watching what we are doing. So we must be careful of what we are doing in front of them. Let me put it this way, if we watch what we are doing even when they are not watching us, then very often we do not have to worry what we are doing when they are watching us.

How about you, in what way(s) has your children been copying you? Have they done anything so far that left a particular deep impression in you and have you watching your actions?

Photo by hortongrou
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29 thoughts on “Mom, You are Stealing Auntie’s Plant

  1. Hilary

    Good parable to use to explain things .. and just something we can all relate to – the next door house, or friend, etc etc .. on top of that it was a money plant .. how did she explain the lack of money ..

    Kids are amazing little souls and are a mirror to ourselves ..
    Hilary Melton-Butcher
    Positive Letters Inspirational Stories
    .-= Hilary´s last blog ..Cricket Ball Squash, Santa Claus, Italy and us … =-.

    1. Symphony of Love Post author

      @ Hilary, over here we call that plant ‘Money Plant.’ I’m not too sure what it is called over your side. You are right, kids are the mirror of ourselves. 🙂

  2. Tina T

    Kids do notice everything, and they manage to look right to the heart of the issue rather than getting confused by all the excuses that adults pile onto their actions to defend them. Great story that explains this all so simply and sweetly.
    .-= Tina T´s last blog ..Rules of Engagement =-.

    1. Symphony of Love Post author

      @ Tina, sometimes I wonder too, if they do notice things around them. Apparently, they not only notice things happening around them, they also pick up things from what happen around them too.

      @ Gabriele, thank you for enlightening us about the name of the money plant that we commonly call over here.

  3. Blia

    Great post! I think we sometimes do things around kids without thinking. Many of these things have probably become habit, so I guess it is important for us to change our bad habits, especially around kids. Thanks for sharing your post.
    .-= Blia´s last blog ..The “People Spirit” Stories =-.

  4. Symphony of Love Post author

    @ Bila, it is a challenge to always watch our behaviours when we are around our kids. The best way would be to always watch our behaviours, whether we are around kids or not. 🙂

  5. Cathy Voisard

    I don’t have children, but I enjoyed your post. The five year old was correct… because she shouldn’t have taken a cutting from the plant without asking! It seems like a silly thing, and I’m sure she wouldn’t have minded, but it is in fact stealing. An interesting story.

  6. Symphony of Love Post author

    @ Cathy, yes, it could have been easier to just ask for it than to do it the way she did. If she can justify that it is ‘right’ to do it, someday the 5 years old can do the same. That is a cause to worry and we can cut this worry from the bud now.

    @ Pam, that is not a nice things to hear them repeating those words. This is something I watch myself carefully too.

    1. Symphony of Love Post author

      @ Lisa, yes yelling. I do see my sister doing that sometimes. We should really be cutting on that. 🙂

      @ Wayangtimes, illegal crossing is one of the things that bothers me too. I am always thinking if I should be crossing the road legally even when no children are watching. 🙂

  7. Sandi

    actually I have a rather good one I think. My husband was recently running late for work due to oversleeping. Rather than tell his boss he overslept he just quickly said “I blew a tire.” I guess he figured that was a better excuse. My hubby is normally on time, so he obviously didn’t want to look bad. A few days later my oldest daughter got into trouble. She is 12. I told her she could play outside for a short time, but NOT to leave the yard. She instantly left the yard. I was angry and called her back home. While reprimanding her for lying she quickly spoke up. “Why not, daddy tells lies sometimes.”

    Foot in mouth! Right? We do need to think of our actions. Even the smallest ones. The kids are indeed listening and we must set a good example.

    Great post.
    .-= Sandi´s last blog ..Dad Update =-.

  8. Symphony of Love Post author

    @ Sandi, thank you for sharing that experience; one good real life experience like yours serves as the best illustration for all of us to be mindful of our thoughts, deeds and words.

  9. meleah rebeccah

    WOW. Your niece is extremely perceptive for only being FIVE years old! And, she was right, that was stealing.

    I always forget my son is forever watching what I am doing too. But, now that he’s 13, he’s more interested in video games than what his mother is doing!!
    .-= meleah rebeccah´s last blog ..Devastation Nation =-.

    1. Symphony of Love Post author

      @ Meleah, I can’t help but to say that my niece is right. Personally I feel it is important that we cultivate the character of the children especially when they are young with values like honesty, kindness, compassion and gratitude. I believe your son is still pretty much interested in what his mother is doing, just that he may not show it explicitly. 🙂

  10. fedhz

    very true. when I got mad of my daughter tapping her spoon on the plate, I did more tapping and she did it more harder. geez.

    that’s why it’s hard to be a parent (role model). You always have to be aware of what you’re doing and saying.

    I definitely agree on what you wrote here. ^^