Today was one of those days. Quinn wet the bed and he had an accident later in the day (We had been doing so good). Eleanor had an explosive diaper. I spent much of the day cleaning up poop and pee and bathing my children. Not pretty.
I was really looking forward to family movie night and so was Quinn. We rented HOP and stopped at Target to pick up a mattress protector (for the reason stated above). This is kind of where everything fell apart.
Quinn was wild. Running, climbing on things, not following directions, etc. It just isn’t the way one should act in a store. Was it a super big deal? No. If this was an isolated incident we probably would have reminded him how he should act and moved on. The thing is this is a pattern of behavior. Quinn is getting older and smarter and he is pushing the boundaries more and more.
When we were at Target I told him we don’t run in the store, we walk. I told him that he wouldn’t be able to watch his movie if he kept on being wild and didn’t start listening. Any guesses as to what he chose?
As we were loading him in the car I told him we would not be able to have family movie night. I explained to him how he made this choice. I’ll save you the details of the entire conversation. The entire car ride home Quinn sobbed and said, “I understand, I understand, I will be a good boy”. HEARTBREAKING.
I so wanted to give in. I so wanted to curl up with my family on the couch and watch a movie. The problem is Quinn has been getting a whole lot of “empty threats” and we have been lax in the follow through and I am starting to see behaviors I don’t like. It stinks. I don’t want to do it, but I rather be tough on him now and be proud of the amazing person he is becoming, than be lax and constantly battling him and his inappropriate behavior.
Quinn is a good kid. A really good kid. Our standards are high. I want to make sure it stays that way. I guess the best way I can describe it is being fit and seeing the scale creep up five pounds. Those five pounds aren’t a huge deal. If you switch things up and get them in check, no problem. If you do nothing and ignore it, five pounds turns into twenty and suddenly it is becoming a big deal.
Today we put things in check. When I felt weak, I thought of what it would be like when Quinn was thirteen and not listening and misbehaving. I thought about how much simpler it is to teach those things now.
Even though I was mad about how Quinn behaved. Even though I was frustrated by his behavior. Even though I wanted him to know I felt angry and frustrated, I didn’t want him to feel unloved. I asked him if he knew mommy loved him and he said yes. I told him that he was right! His mommy loves him very much.
In fact, it isn’t uncommon for us to hug Quinn or tell him we love him while disciplining him. I think he is more receptive to what we are trying to teach him when it comes from a place of love. I am stern, but I think going to hard on a kid just makes them shut down and they lose the lesson.
When Quinn said he was sorry, I acknowledged his apology. I told him I was glad he was sorry and that made me feel better. I still maintained that he made the choice to keep misbehaving so there was no movie night tonight. We decided as a family we were going to put this bad day behind us. Tomorrow we are going to wake up to a new, fresh start.
We are going to make pancakes and watch our movie in the morning. I think it sound like a lovely, lazy Saturday morning.
The funny thing is, as I tucked Quinn in tonight, he already seemed over it. He was full of, “I love you” and “You are the best mom ever”. He is probably drifting off to sleep feeling loved and okay. I, on the other had, can’t stop beating myself up, worrying and wondering. Are we doing it right? Nothing lays on the guilt quite like being Mom.
This wasn’t suppose to be today’s post, but when I sat down, this was what was on my mind. I imagine this is on a lot of parent’s minds. What is right anyways? I just do the best I can and it comes from the deepest love I have ever known.
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