I messed up. I apologized. We laughed together.
Adults should apologize to kids more often. It shows them that we need forgiveness and grace just like them. That, like them, we make mistakes and don’t have it all together.
Working with students can get aggravating at times. They say things that make your head shake and have a way of poking the bear inside of you in a way you thought no human being could ever do. Adults snap. Maybe we punish our kids to harshly, we raise our voice to loud, we make them cry, we use our size and position to intimidate those younger than us. Admit it, you have done it before in one-way or another. I felt bad of course. You know that moment in you where you went past the line. I messed up.
Then there is this moment where you have a choice to make. A choice about what type of person you want to be. Do you want pretend that it’ll all just go away or can you reconcile that relationship. I apologized. I said what I did wrong and why I reacted the way I did. I said I was sorry and asked for forgiveness. I got it. You know what, they apologized too.
I knew that there was still an opportunity there to build something bigger and more beautiful than before. We spent fifteen minutes hanging out together and laughing. We both learned something about one another that day. It was all good in the end. I think it would’ve turned out a lot differently if I didn’t apologize.
We have taken up a position in the lives of kids. As parents, as teachers, as pastors, mentors, coaches and friends. That comes with the responsibility to model behaviors that help shape them. Kids are always watching. We aren’t perfect though. In the moment you mess up, recognize it and leverage it to connect with a kid on a deeper level.