Choose Wisely

The ramifications of one simple sentence can be absolutely amazing.

I’m used to being the one doling out the lessons to Buddy, but every so often he surprises me with one of his own.

We were having a difficult time together that I think most parents can relate to. Buddy needed to practice his martial arts. We only needed to put in about 15 minutes of good solid practice and we would be done, but Buddy had different ideas. Things escalated and it turned into a screaming and crying test of stubborn wills. This lasted for quite awhile. I reached a point of frustration and had to call Dad, hoping that he could talk some sense into Buddy. What ended up happening was Buddy talking sense into me. No, it was more like getting my attention by taking a 2×4 to my head.

He reached for the phone and the first thing he said to Dad was:

“Dad, Mom won’t be nice to me.”

Now I know that doesn’t sound too bad, but it hit me hard. I’m used to being called all forms of mean. I can handle that. No kid likes to be disciplined. And most of the time they think of it as the parent being mean while the parent just thinks of it as part of the process. But this was different.

The way he phrased it made it seem like I had made a conscious decision to not be nice to him. Like I was purposefully trying to hurt him. Of course that wasn’t my intent at all, but it broke my heart to think that he would actually believe I would choose to hurt him. So I began to cry.

Buddy and I had a long conversation about how he felt and what could be changed. We worked through it all and are now traveling a different avenue for our interactions. It seems to be going well so far. I guess you’re never to old to be the student.

Lesson learned: Choose your tactics wisely. As a parent you are focused on the long-term end goal, but your child lives in the moment. They don’t look that far ahead. Don’t lose site of what’s going on right in front of you, be in the moment with them.

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~ by blacktoprhoades on October 9, 2010.

2 Responses to “Choose Wisely”

  1. Wonderful lesson that every parent should have to learn. Job well done. Aunt Ellen

  2. I’m just sorry it took me this long to figure it out. So far we are still on the right track and everything is going better.

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