Listening to My Two-Year-Old
January 1983

“Listening to My Two-Year-Old,” Ensign, Jan. 1983, 70

Listening to My Two-Year-Old

It had become a turbulent day—a day of whining from my three-year-old, of agonized teething cries from the baby, and of imaginative antics from my two-year-old as she colored the walls, spit-waded my scrapbook, and pickled the linoleum.

I was seething with frustration. Then I discovered another “crime,” and I boiled over. I whirled to berate the culprit.

But before the words could be uttered, I saw in a flash, not my mischievous two-year-old, but a young troubled teen wearing the same “please-listen-and-understand-me-Mom” expression. It was an experience to rend my heart with remorse. In that instant I fully recognized the seeds I was sowing for our future relationship. To continue to fuss, fume, and yell would only result in her recoiling from me and from our family to seek love, security, and understanding elsewhere. No! I cried. I must not let that happen. I must gather her in my arms and somehow let her know that I love her in spite of her mischief.

The moment passed, and once more it was my two-year-old who stood before me. My heart told me she was entrusted to my care for safekeeping, for nurturing, for returning to God someday. Marilyn A. Bullock, Mesa, Arizona