While I always admit to my child if I make mistakes. Today’s case was particularly special. A stupidity so huge it affected the entire neighborhood
I accused someone of stealing.
The story of the missing phone
We’re still on lockdown and all laundromats are still closed. This is one of the few things I learned on quarantine. Handwashing and drying clothes outside. Honestly, it was one of my favorite chores. Seeing the soiled shirts, towels, sheets, fresh and clean again. The sun naturally killing the bacteria and drying the fabric.
This morning, after finishing my favorite chore, I went inside ready to watch the newest episode of Ru Paul’s Drag Race when I noticed
WHERE IS MY PHONE?!
I felt my chest tightening up.
The thought of my accounts, photos, passwords lost.
It was my livelihood.
The neurotic me rushed outside screaming for help. “Help! My phone’s missing!”
My neighbors were kind enough to help out. They told me there was a guy selling fish who passed by while I was hanging the clothes.
My mind immediately accused the man. So I hurried to the guardhouse, and the rest to chase the fish vendor. We saw him walking towards the gate so we held him up. I was in a state of panic so I was shouting and screaming “Where is my phone!? Please give back my phone?!”
The fish vendor answered “Don’t be too quick to judge! I’ve been selling fish here for more than 14 years I wouldn’t ruin my reputation”
So I let him go. But in my heart and my mind, he was the one who stole it. The guards, the neighbors, started to think so too. I was with Geof the whole time. He saw everything.
We found it!
Feeling broken. That all is lost. I asked Geof one last time to help me check around the house for my phone.
“Moooooom it’s on top of the cabinet!!!!” Geof told cheerily. He was also laughing at me. He was happy he found my phone.
But then my heart sank. I felt guilt and shame for accusing the fish vendor of theft.
I was wrong.
I wanted to make up for my stupidity immediately. The first step is, of course, telling Geof mommy was wrong for accusing the fish vendor.
“Geof, mommy made a terrible mistake. I need to apologize to the fish vendor and our neighbors.“
Geof hugged me and said “Mom, I’m proud of you”
So off I went outside and apologized to the following people in order:
- My neighbors – who shared my panic and distress
- The fish vendor – who got into trouble and was caught in public when it was my fault
- The subdivision guard
I humbled myself and said:
“Humihingi po ako ng dispensa. Naabala ko po kayo sa pagkataranta at pagakamali ko”
It felt so good that they were kind enough to tell me that they understand what I felt earlier, as a solo-parent whose livelihood is her mobile devices. Even the fish vendor told me “Naintinidhan ko naramdaman mo wag ka magalala”
I still feel stupid right now honestly. I should be more careful next time.
Parents, why you should admit you’re wrong
Most parents would find it hard to admit they’re wrong. Especially in front of their kids. We want to look superior because they’re looking up to us. We assume we should be perfect, correct, and never wrong. Because how will they obey us if we make mistakes right?
If we don’t admit we’re wrong, they’ll think what we did was right.
We should teach our kids that we are human and we make mistakes. But what’s important is we admit and learn from it. Because when they grow up, they’ll have less ego and have more compassion for others.
Don’t be afraid to apologize. You will not be less of a parent if you do. Your kids will thank you for it, and they’ll carry this lesson with them when they become responsible, well-rounded (albeit imperfect) adults.
As parents, it’s our responsibility to do our best to raise better humans for the future. Because history will repeat itself until we learn from it.