There are certain things that my kids do that drive me wild. If they are driving me crazy, then one day they will drive the world crazy as well. It is my job as their parent to raise them into adults that the world can stand one day.
When dealing with children, one should never assume that they know what is expected of them. They need you to spell things out. Slowly. That is why I am holding a kids’ seminar. Feel free to share this with your children.
Okay. Here we go.
Topic 1: Conversation: The Dying Art
I value our chats. However it is unnecessary for you to go as far away from me as possible, then decide that you would like to carry on a conversation. If you want to talk to me, come find me.
I have actually counted and a child will yell “MOM” 14 times before he/she decides to come come find you.
Topic 2: The Dinner Table
It is possible to have a meal with your family, without looking like you want to die. I worked hard to prepare that meal, which you are anguishing over. I don’t care what you think, TWO bites will NOT kill you.
Either way I would like to eat my meal without having to look over at your drooping, disgusted face.
Topic 3: Clothing Removal
You TOO can remove your clothes from your body without turning every single item inside out. Valuable time is wasted returning items to their appropriate condition before I can even wash them. NO ONE wants their hand in your dirty underwear or socks. Not even your mother.
Topic 4: Toothpaste Usage
I am not sure why the manufacturers of kids’ toothpaste insist that it be neon blue. Even with that, it is possible to apply (please note that I didn’t say squirt, because squirt could be misconstrued as “party in the bathroom”) toothpaste onto your brush without getting it on the sink. And the mirror. And the floor. And the carpet in the hall. And your hair. And your brother’s hair.
Toothpaste, while agreed can be great fun, should not be used to show your creative genius all over my house. Once that stuff dries on certain surfaces you can’t get it off with a Brillo pad.
Topic 5: Don’t Be Afraid of a Shower
Please notice that in certain rooms of the house there are areas referred to as showers. You should make a point to visit one each day. I realize it can be a daunting task to remove the dirt from YOUR OWN body. I didn’t know until I had boys that it is actually possible to leave a shower just as dirty as before you got in.
For those kids who are like my daughter, I will have a separate section on how to satisfactorily clean yourself in the shower, without draining the water tank.
Topic 6: The Family Fridge
This is where I keep the fresh produce, dairy and meats. Please do not leave your empty cup, half-eaten yogurt container or soccer ball in there. You should decide what you need from the refrigerator BEFORE you open the door. Standing there with your mouth hanging open, will not make things magically appear.
Also YES the light does go off as you close the door. Opening it over and over in quick succession, trying to catch the bulb off guard, will never work.
Topic 7: I Come From a Place of NO
If you ask me to do something or for something and I respond with a NO, please turn around and walk away. If I say no I actually mean no. I don’t want to see sad eyes or pouty lips. No begging and pleading. Do not ask me again the very same question and expect a different response. If I say no, you asking me over and over again, does not change my mind. Instead it makes me all the more resolved to make sure that your request is NEVER granted. Ever.
Topic 8: YOU Don’t Have a Job and Therefore YOU Have No Money
I know this is a hard lesson to learn. I will show you what happens when you take your wallet full of NO MONEY to a store. You will come home with nothing. Do not feel entitled to anything. Do not take things for granted. You have a pretty good life and all it costs you is unlimited hugs and kisses.
Topic 9: Underwear is NOT the Enemy
Little boys left to dress themselves, will never put on the underwear. Why should I, you ask? Well let’s say your friend is walking by. He trips and falls and in an effort to save himself on his way down, grabs your waistband. You don’t have on underwear? Yeah. We noticed.
If you have a bathroom emergency your underwear provides another layer of protection, if heaven forbid the unthinkable occurs. Underwear is your friend. Embrace it.
Then refer to Topic 3 and turn it the right side out.
Topic 10: That is YOUR Homework. I Did Mine Years Ago
I did my time in school. I had to read, write and study just as you are being asked now. When your teacher gives you work to do, it is up to you to make sure that it gets done. Just because I don’t ask if you have homework, doesn’t mean that you don’t. I am more than happy to help if you need my assistance, but sitting there staring at me is not getting it done. You have to be responsible for yourself. Yes, I know it is only the second grade.
Besides, I am not so sure I know how to do your second grade math. What ever happened to the math that I spent years learning? I didn’t know that they could just change math.
And Pluto will always be a planet to me.
In closing, if you are a child and ever find yourself questioning what is the right choice, simply refer to this golden rule:
If Mama’s happy, we’re ALL happy.
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