Tuesday, August 14, 2007

The Perils of Parenting

Something happened today that made me sigh and hate the fact that I am the one "in charge" some days. K.Z. left for his New York adventure so it was just the girls and I today until they head to my Mom's tomorrow for their own adventure.

So off we went into the wild blue yonder doing things that girls like to do... buying and returning. The day was going fabulously and since I had been dragging the girls with me for one errand or another all morning and they were being wonderful, I wanted to treat them. Off to Chick-Fil-A we went. Things were going just swimmingly until I found a table in the very crowded restaurant. I instructed the girls to sit at the table while I went to get the food. They plopped right into the chairs at the table made for four and then the whining began.

Xena wanted to sit next to me. She was currently sitting across from me. Since I knew that suggesting to C'sa that perhaps she switch seats with her sister would cause double whining, I happily explained to Xena that she was right across from me and that was a great spot. We could chat easily and still be next to one another. She was not buying it and immediately began to protest. So I decided to up the ante. I told her that she was to sit there and if she did not change her attitude we could just as easily leave and have lunch at home. Guess what we ended up doing? It did not involve me getting a beloved chicken sandwich.

I was disappointed that we had to leave since Miss Xena did not decide to change the scowl on her face, but that was not the part that made me sigh. I came to two struggles within. The first was that C'sa had been wonderful and compliant and still got punished in a sense. She pointed this out to me as we were leaving and both girls were in a state of shock and panic. C'sa started to cry and said, "But I had a good attitude!"

She was right. Her attitude was wonderful and yet she still got the short end of the stick thanks to her sister.

My second struggle is the fact that I was not taken seriously at first blush. Does my track record not prove that when I say something, I am completely serious? More than likely, it does not. Xena figured she could sulk all she wanted and would still get a kid's meal at Chick-Fil-A and that probably has happened before. Mr. Clean and I talk about first time compliance, but how often do I make them "tow the line". If today was any indication, Mommy is the one who needs the work.

I am still craving that chicken sandwich.


Mrs. Sam said...

Wondering if I'm number 7 who stumbled here...just looking for encouragement and happy to say I found it. May I add you to my blog list? I've found reality here and I'm liking that...refreshing and comfortable. Your most welcome to visit me at www.homeskooldaize.blogspot.com anytime, pop in for coffee and stay awhile...hope you come by.

TheTutor said...

We haven't had to do this yet, but I have two words for you... Drive Thru! Plop them in the car, ask C'sa what she'd like, order for the two of you, and when you get home, make Xena something basic to eat while you and C'sa enjoy your treat.

I am proud of you for sticking by your punishment. It is so easy to back down when 1) our punishment of them results in punishing ourselves and 2) we have that inner struggle of wanting to discipline while also wanting to give them something special.

Way to go, Mom!

Jamie said...

Ugh, I'm so guilty of not following through w/threats. Good for you to stick to your guns!