Let’s just say there has been a lot of togetherness and today I was close to running out of patience. I love having kids but their little idiosyncrasies and constant noise making skills start to drive me crazy.
We still have a couple days left of spring break!
I took all three of them with me to the grocery store this afternoon and warned them before we left, that they needed to cooperate and be quiet and to work together as a team. The peace lasted maybe 30 seconds before they needed another reminder. The littlest one just had no idea what I was talking about or maybe I was speaking a different language. He just didn’t get it.
At the store, I asked him to share the hand held scanner with his sister. They both liked scanning the items and putting them in the cart. The oldest one was helping to make dinner with me tonight and was interested in picking out the ingredients and occupied himself. The littlest ones were in constant competition.
Everything I asked was ignored. I gave him another warning, asking him to stand behind me and to follow along quietly, but he couldn’t control his little body. If I said stand behind me, he went ahead. When I asked him to be quiet, he had a question. When I warned him there would be consequences, it didn’t seem to matter and he just asked for a hug. Good tactics, huh?
He wanted what he wanted and I wanted what I wanted and we were at war. Not really, but do you get it? Did I tell you I was short on patience before we left?
So when we came home, I told him he had to stay in his room for the rest of the night, for disrupting the family and for being disobedient. He still didn’t understand and wanted to be with the family. I don’t think he got the connection between his actions and the consequences that were bestowed upon him. I had him write sentences while he was in his room to explain why he was acting like he was and what he should do differently next time. You see, it wasn’t just at the store that he was being irritating. He was irritating all day to all of us.
So after we made dinner and he finished writing and begged to come out, I said absolutely not. I told him we’d take a family vote and decide whether we should change the punishment. All four of us voted no and explained why. All of us were sad with the decision but it was the right thing to do.
How do you teach kids how to behave properly without hitting them or giving in? This parenting thing sure is challenging. I hope tomorrow we can start over again and all enjoy each others’ company again. We’re still learning.