Monday, November 2, 2009

The Facts Of Life...

At some point it is guaranteed if you have children they will do something that will cause you to go through a few stages of emotions with in a very short time frame.... 1st stage is shock, 2nd stage anger ( Very important to employ all calming skills known at this moment, even better if said child is not home) 3rd frustration, 4th confusion and 5th this one take a bit longer to get too... eventually you will find humor in the situation.
So on Halloween I was doing laundry and even being nice enough to put away my 7 year old boys laundry.... I went with his basket of folded clothing to put them in his dresser when what awaited my was quite shocking.... I reached for his drawer and looked down to see his name so neatly carved across the drawer front not once but multiple times. Lucky for the boy he was at a friends home playing because the anger stage came quite quickly..... I was sure he should be grounded for life. So I called my husband in and sent my daughter to retrieve him from his friends home. For my husband the shock stage lasted much longer than mine. Luckily for my boy by the time he entered the door way the anger stage was phasing to the frustration phase. So with my husband there to help me manage my anger stage we brought him in to talk to him. We started prying for information on what his tool of choice for carving had been... He started out with telling us it was a half of a plastic egg (Somehow mom and dad just didn't buy that and egg was quickly destroyed) Then the realization that mom and dad meant business kicked in and he began to tell his story. His story involved a needle found on the ground at school and brought home. You can imagine the concern I felt of him finding a needle of unknown origin and bringing it home. We pressed further for a description and location of the needle. He then informed us it was red and shaped like a black widow. (We finally figured out he meant like an hour glass) It was a thumb tack. So then The next stage of confusion kicked in... While I was angry and frustrated that he had perpetrated such an act, I was worried that he did not see the danger in picking up a needle or thumbtack and playing with it. Now we were faced with the dilema of how to teach him that he should never pick up sharp objects and never deface his furniture... what punishment fits that type of behavior. The thought of grounding him forever did cross my mind... as did making sure Santa did not bring him any toys this Christmas but give mommy and daddy money instead to replace and or repair the dresser also crossed my mind. When I explained to him that it would take an entire Christmas worth of toys to replace something like a dresser the boy crumpled in tears. So we told him that he would be helping daddy sand and re stain the dresser (Which in his mind is a bit fun so further punishment would be necessary) and that he would have to do things to help pay for the time it took daddy to complete such a project (I also added some time grounded from friends just to drive the point home).
So now that the anger phase is gone I still have a bit of the Frustration phase lingering but I am starting to see the final phase of humor. This is one of those things every parent must go through and one that I will tell stories of for the rest of my life and his.... Crazy boy. I really thought by 7 we would be past this phase... but not so. So perhaps if... no when a situation like this happens to you, remembering this five stage process will help you through... just remember every one with children must pass through this part of life process some mulitple times.

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