We know it all as teenagers
When we are teenagers, we take a vow to never end up like our parents. I remember swearing that I would never do "such and such" when I had kids. But, that usually changes as we grow and mature. Eventually, we realize that our parents really are cool and know a thing or two about life. Somehow down the road, I found myself being just like my mom. I mean absolutely no disrespect to my mother. She really does know a thing or two about raising kids and getting kids to listen. Today was a really good example.
What in the hell happened to my house???
Again, my kids had the house torn apart while I worked on some projects. That usually doesn't bother me too much but the piece of straw that broke my back was when my 7-year-old daughter and her friend coaxed the dog upstairs with treats. The dog has been trained not to go upstairs. That's my one area of the house where I don't have an extra "kid" under my feet and dog hair all over. As many times as I had yelled at the kids about "ruining the dog's training" and coaxing her upstairs, she did it again. I sent her friend home and grounded my daughter to her room until it was completely clean. All of a sudden, the mess in the house was beyond what I could handle.
I found myself doing "such and such"
I hated it when I was a kid and my mom threw all my stuff in the middle of the floor when she was cleaning. It showed me that my mom didn't care about any of my stuff, when realistically, why should my mom care about my stuff if I didn't care enough to pick it up and put it away? Once she started doing that, we learned very quickly to get our butts off the chair (and fast) and start picking up.
So here I was, throwing my daughters' things in the middle of the floor and making a very big pile. Because I was so mad about the dog being upstairs, I was kicking most of the stuff into the pile. My 3-year-old had a "fort" built in the play/dining room with the Barbie house all separated. She keeps tearing the flowers off the windows, doors and windows torn off the hinges and the furniture just thrown inside the house. Right now, the Barbie toilet and bathtub are upside down in the kitchen. I started kicking parts of the Barbie house and furniture over to it's rightful place and my daughter fell apart. She wailed because "I don't like her Barbie house anymore." That was when I realized what my mom did was right on. Why should I care about my kids' things when they don't take care of it themselves? It was a very clear visual at that point. The house got cleaned up very quickly and I hope they learned that if they don't care enough about their stuff to pick it up, it was going to get kicked and thrown around.
Mirror, mirror on the wall....
I am my mother afterall, and I am damn proud of it! My mom knew a thing or two about raising kids. Was she perfect? No. Did she make mistakes? Sure. She's human. I learned things from her that I've tried with my own kids that didn't work, and tried things that worked very well. All I can do is pray that my kids will learn from my mistakes as a parent and learn from me what did work and try other tricks that might work on their own kids someday.
In the meantime....
I'm going to continue to throw my kids' stuff in the middle of the floor. My house is picked up now and in record time, too. I'm going to continue to try new tricks and call my mom when I need help. I find myself calling my mom almost everyday asking her the simplest questions. And she really does know what she's talking about! Read more at Mirror,Mirror....