Wednesday, June 14, 2006

From The Mama File

I have discovered, in my four years of parenting, that it saves a Mama a lot of time and hassle if you tell your kids what is going on. For instance, when you awake in the morning if you say "Junior, this morning Mama is going to go to work and Daddy will take care of you all day and then when Mama gets home after your sleepy nap we can make dinner together" then you have just alleviated potential melt downs. Sure, you may be stuck with the whining, there may be no parenting skill to get around that. But isn't it better than throw-self-on-floor-scream?

I had been very good about doing this with S.O.v.1 but have been more lax with S.O.v.2 and am feeling the effects. I am not talking enough about what is going on in the day. I used to do this all the time, make a running commentary on the day, i.e. "As soon as Mama gets done cleaning the toilet I think we should go have a snack. What do you think?" It worked wonders and we went through terrible 2s with little fuss... not just terrible 2s but terrible 2s with new baby in the house. Now that new baby is 2 we are seeing real fuss I have been wondering what the hell is going on. It occured to me that I have let down my commentary guard. It is so easy to let the complication of a second child divert one onto the short road. But the short road often has road blocks to progress. Like, trying to get out the door and child is clinging leach-like so that you can't actually get out the door. It made me realize that had I just taken the time to talk to the leach I'd be there by now!

So, the moral is, always tell the kids what is going on in their world. "We're gonna have some breakfast and then Mama is going to leave for work" It's the same working principle for leaving the park. I think all Mamas know about the 10 minute warning. If you think about it, too, it is only fair. Imagine you had not kind of control on your day and how it played out - I mean, really no control - you'd be fussy too. It is somewhat akin to being in prison, but the guards love you... wait, that may not be the best analogy... but you see what I mean. And frankly, the more I talk the easier and more enjoyable my Mama life is. It's worth a few extra breaths to avoid the naughty corner!

1 comment:

demondoll said...

Oh yes. We know all about 10 minute warning here. Except I vary it too much- 20 minutes! 11 minutes! 7 minutes! 2 minutes. Mind, I am not at all accurate in my time. Poor child has no real concept of minutes.