Friday, December 26, 2008
Should I Feel Guilty?
Maybe I should... but Jeff and I can't stop laughing about it anyway. I posted earlier that Teagan had started the day being mean to me. And then she kept it going. Sometimes being sweet and sometimes being purposefully attitudinal, bossy, mean, hurtful to me. Not to Daddy. To me. So we are working on getting out the door so we can go to lunch and run a couple of errands. Jeff and I had hoped to come up with something fun to do today but Teagan would act up and be mean and we knew we weren't going to do anything special. Too risky. So we decide on lunch at McDonald's (which is a big deal because I rarely eat there). And then run to Target and then the grocery store. Teagan was impossible getting ready. Several times, we threatened to just not go. Or that Teagan would have to stay home with Mommy while Daddy took Zach out to run errands. She wouldn't get dressed, she complained about her socks, etc. She would ignore or make faces or mouth off. Just enough to get to the border, just enough to almost get in trouble. Then we got to the shoes. She refused to put them on. Fine. We won't go out. Whine. Then get your shoes on. She has one shoe on and the other is on the floor. Dad asks her to pick it up, she refuses. He asks me to get it. So I do. And I hold it up and ask him if I am being mean or nice by getting the shoe for him. He says nice. Then I ask if I should give it to Teagan in a nice way or a mean way. I asked her if she could start making different choices and be nice for the rest of the day... if she could do that, I would give her the shoe nicely. If not... I would throw it at her. She thought I was kidding. She got snotty with me. Jeff saw it coming. He scooted out from under her, away from the couch. She kept up her nastiness. So I gently tossed the shoe at her arm. Truly- barely grazed her sleeve. She plays ball harder. But the emotional impact of Mommy being intentionally mean... The WAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAIL that came from that child's mouth! The passion behind it! The fall to the floor! The arm held limp at her side! And I had to run from the room because I was laughing so hard! Jeff couldn't SPEAK because he was cracking up! See- we really are horrible parents. I think Jeff and I cracked up, as she lay on the floor, wailing and such, for a good 3 minutes. Jeff finally composed himself enough to scoop her up and take her to her room. Got her calmed down, got her shoe on. And since then, all has been good. Funny thing... as I was getting her coat on, she remarks that Clara threw her shoe at the Mouse King (Nutcracker reference). And I agreed... The Mouse King was being mean to the Nutcracker so Clara threw her shoe to make him stop. On our errand running adventure, she was perfectly behaved. I had to reference the shoe throwing one time and she quickly changed her tune. So I guess that can be my new parenting advice. Throw shoes at your kids. Except don't, really. Unless you need a really good laugh.
OK, that story made me laugh. I pictured every part of it! Growing up with mom's wearing wooden like Dr. Scholls(sp) clogs, they used them as weapons and had pretty good aim. If they missed and you laughed, they still had another shoe.
I would think parenting is hard. I find myself questioning many things in life. Like, if I throw my shoe at her because she is being mean, will she do the same to other kids and think that's the right way to handle it? Or if I threaten that Santa will come back for the gifts he brought, what message will that send? I've gotten hit with belts, shoes and hands and I'm fine (I think) so I say, keep up the great parenting!
Oh Liz....did I EVER laugh at that - the part when you and Jeff lost it. Sorry T - but that was beyond funny cuz I can totally picture the drama queen going at it on the floor LOL
I love this post, Liz. It makes me feel a little less nutty! We experience scenes like this 26 times a day it seems. Thanks for sharing :)
Hey, your parenting style seems much like mine was when mine were small! I had no patience for whining and did some pretty crazy things to make my point. It worked, though!
And if you can't laugh at child-rearing, you might as well give it up!
The holidays don't always bring out the best in kids, do they? Off to call CP....JK
What a mean mommy!!!! And that means you are doing a fabulous job parenting your kids! Keep up the good work!
My ex once tapped my daughter's hand with 2 fingers and she wailed like he intentionally broke her arm! Be warned! She grew up to be an actress and she has the theatre degree to prove it!
Guess it was a case of "if the shoe fits, throw it." She'll probably remember that incident -- with more dramatics than it actually contained -- for a LONG time. Thanks for sharing!
Given that Jeff and I met in the theatre and our lives were very entrenched in that scene- until havin kids. So she definitely has theatre in her blood!
aww .. that's so funny .. poor girl ! hopefully she learned the lesson .. i lack the ability to deal with kids .. and i dunno if i ever will ..
I've said it before and I'll say it again. You're a genius - you just don't know it yet. Thanks for the truly awesomely funny and thought provoking post.
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