All mothers have their standard admonitions, words of wisdom aimed at our kids. When the kids are grown (into decent adults, we hope) they laugh about what Mom always said. But once they have their own kids they stop laughing because they realize — suddenly, one day — that they’re repeating their own unique, peculiar-to-them phrases.
My own mother’s favorite was, “That is a piece of equipment, not a toy.” I can’t imagine what she would think about cell phones.
Mine was, “Be gracious.”
In other words, stop sniping and biting at your siblings. Quit nitpicking. Control the eye roll. Don’t be so loud, obnoxious, rude, overbearing, arrogant, and irritating. Don’t call your sibling stupid simply because you don’t agree with them. Comport yourself with some level of dignity and decorum, courtesy and composure. Act with some loyalty toward one another, because that’s what families do.
It’s all beautifully encapsulated in two words: Be gracious.
Calm, Stately, Serene
A perfect visual of this concept of being gracious is Victorian, the limited edition print by Heidi Presse. A young woman walks, stately and serene, into a San Jose Mission church. It is no doubt a hot day, but she maintains a sense of cool composure, a measured tread that takes her where she wants to go without pushing, pulling, shoving, or foisting herself upon the situation. There is a calm serenity about her movements that inspires calm in those who see her.
A mother, say, would observe that she is setting a good example, inspiring those around her to be calm and serene themselves, not frantic or fearful, bossy or demanding, judgmental or contentious. In the act of being gracious, she is bestowing grace wherever she goes.
Stay Gracious — We’ve Got Enough Rudeness on Social Media Alone
The featured image to this article is Victorian by Heidi Presse. You may purchase the print online at this link. We would be absolutely delighted to frame the work for you, working online and by phone — something we have been doing successfully for many years with out out-of-town clients. Email us at Wenaha.com to start the conversation.
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