A Little Positive Reinforcement

Oh how wonderful it is when something you’ve worked at begins to bear fruit. Recently I’ve noticed how helpful Bella is. Just last night she went and found a cup of water for Sophia with no prompting from us. It seemingly just occurred to her that her sister might be thirsty. Of course, every time we notice her doing such a spontaneous act of kindness we praise her to high heaven. And we praise her equally when she is helpful after we’ve asked her to do something. Positive reinforcement works. A little praise makes her eager to do more and more. Though she sometimes tries to do things I’d rather she not do… but that’s another story.

I had been remarking on her helpfulness to Dom and we were discussing the value of positive reinforcement. And then a few minutes later I found myself singing the Regina Caeli (it’s been on my lips quite often in this Easter season) and Sophie, as has become her habit, began to beam in her sunny Sophie little way. She clapped her hands and then pressed them together in prayer. She began to sing at the top of her voice, a pretty good approximation of “alleluia.” It made me smile so I sang the simple melody again and again.

Oh I may think I’m a wise parent, but I have an even wiser Father who sends me such positive reinforcement. My girls both love to pray and their joy is infectious. Sophie is following in her sister’s footsteps here, giving me such wonderful encouragement. Bella reminds me to pray, sometimes begs me to pray. God knows I need all the help I can get to be mindful of His presence, to turn to him for help. I am so glad he uses my sweet girls as his messengers.

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