question yourself, develop many answers, find the patterns and there is truth.
i think we had our first serious talk with a.. yup, it was time to let her know that there may be other kids out there trying to push mcdonalds on her. it starts with a “where did you get that princess toy?”, moves into “you got to climb and play in that tree house?” and ends with a greasy heart stopping burger, stinky gas and acne. no, although she did ask about the tree house and we told her it was like a bunch of playgrounds – nothing special. i think at this point, with all the weirdness i have in my brain about mcdonalds, i just couldn’t bring myself to taking the kids there. they may not even be that bad. there are many other places that can satisfy a salt urge and don’t contribute to all the weirdness that mcdonalds does. one confession, okay two, i ate there about three months ago when i was traveling with my dad to ohio and i stopped for a shake with a good friend of mine as we were making our way from milwaukee to madison late at night after seeing sarah silverman. why do i even care. i have this weird need to rationalize mcdonalds like i do my smoking. “i was just with friends man. i would never do it alone”. funny.
we actually did have a talk with a. about the truth. a big one right? a., and h. for that matter, have been working on getting jabs in on the other when r. and i aren’t watching. h. needs a lot of work on her technique – way to obvious. she does this tongue pushed-to-the-back-of-the-teeth-growl-red-faced-thing and charges at a. – very easy to stop and see her going in for the kill. i happen to use the same technique. she is a pincher too. which…we have found out she learned from her less obvious quick striking sister. a. pushed h. over in r.’s office and when asked if she had pushed over her sister she answered with a quick “no” and on to the next thing. an opportunity to discuss telling mommy and daddy the truth. i asked her to look at me as we sat on the couch for this “serious” meeting – as i write this i am laughing at how funny i must have looked. she put a pillow over her face and i don’t blame her. we asked her if she knew what the “truth” was. she shrugged. r. and i let her know that the truth is what happens. even if you are going to get in trouble for what happens it is easier to deal with it right away and move on. people do goofy things and they’re not bad, they just did something goofy – like push over your sister. when people find out that you didn’t tell the truth it harder for them to trust you and you won’t be able to do as many cool things. “like walk across the street by myself?” a. asked. yes, we need to trust that you have listened to our rules and that you will tell us what happens, even if you may get in trouble. too hard for a 4-year-old? even as i write this i wonder. she at least listened. we ended with a hug and she said “daddy i pushed h. over in the office” i said “awesome job a. that is great.” she went running out of the room way too happy.
it’s hard to know when to discuss these things with kids – when to just let something go and when to dig deeper into what happened. i see it as learning, and if not equipped with these tools they will have a harder time in life. we can dismiss everything to their age and figure they’ll figure it out someday, we can punish the hell out of them when they have no idea what they did wrong (see rubbing a dogs face in poop three hours after they left it there), or something in the middle. i prefer to dig deeper – sometimes too much – r. reminds me now and then “okay, they get it. time to back off”.
i would like to be smokey the bear. a tall, furry, and friendly beast that will f’ you up if you start a fire. yah, just like smokey.
truth is weird.
today we walked to the creek. i love watching a. “feed the fish” with bark and twigs. she worked hard at including h., but h. was more inclined to sit in the shade. the walk home-made me a sweaty mess. a. brought an umbrella which shaded her and h. – good idea. when we got back to the house one of the neighbors stopped by to introduce herself. she was kind and only the 2nd person that we have met in the neighborhood that is from alabama. lunch and playtime rounded out the afternoon. h. is napping and a. is trying desperately to get my attention by putting Eeyore’s butt in my face.
weekend is here.
“truth” by alexander. one of my favorites.
a 4th of july pic for you.