The Key to Effective Parenting
August 09, 2014
Posted By: Shaunescy
Saturday morning and the kids are binging on cartoons. I know that I should be mowing the lawn or really tackling my back-to-school shopping list, but instead I’ve opted for that third cup of coffee and my fingers are itching to tell you a story.
No doubt you are feeling the same end of summer antsy feelings that I am. Trying to be present in the moment and enjoy lounging poolside as the kiddos practice shark arms. But also knowing that it’s over so soon.
I am anxious for the small stretches of time to have the house to myself while the kids are in school.
I will not miss the constant chorus of, “Mom, can I have a snack?” Or, a drink or a Popsicle. I will not miss the whining about turning off the cartoons to head off on errands. But most of all, I will not miss the newest and most irritating ‘trick’ that my kids have found to play on me.
They have discovered that mom freaks out when they lock her out. It can be locking me out of the house when I head out to check the mail or water the plants. Or my numero uno peeve . . . When they get into the car before me and then lock the doors.
I have a key, I can get in. But, that little stutter step, designed specifically to needle me, absolutely sets my teeth on edge.
The other day, it was so hot that I didn’t want to cook. We opted for pizza. My son came with me and my daughter stayed home with papa. Sometimes you have to divide the troops to conquer the whining. We picked up the pizza, my boy hopped in the car before me and thunk – locked it right up.
And I launched into my tirade, “How many times do I have to tell you that that makes me bananas!” “Why do you want your mother to be irritated? Gah!”
In that moment, I heard myself and I saw his body posture. Just 100% turning my whining off. Deep breath mama. Change your tune. Plaster that smile on your face.
“Ok, son. You know what? The door-locking thing drives me crazy, but I am not going to get mad at you about it. Here’s what I am going to do. I am going to take notes.
When you grow up and get married and have kids, I am moving into your house and I am going to teach your kids all of your tricks.
And I’ll be a cute little batty old lady by then. So nobody will blame me for being a little childish, too. Except for your wife, but I’ll let her in on my secret.
I’ll ask you, ‘Sonny-boy, could you take me to the beauty salon before my bridge club luncheon’ and when you say yes, I will scurry out to your Audi TT, as fast as my spindly old bow-legged legs will carry me and I will lock you out.
And then I will cackle – daintily, hiding my powdered nose behind a wrinkled and age-spotted hand.”
I let out my best old lady cackle. aieeeeeee-hehe-hehe!
His eyes were like saucers. I think I’ve found the key.
All my best, BunnyFufu ~ The Housewife