Saturday, March 10, 2012
The 30% Clause.
Well. I am not one of those bloggers that blogs every day. There's not too many things I do every day, actually. I have so many things that I need to cram into life, that I have to rotate them. Somehow, over the last two weeks, my usually busy schedule has reached frenetic levels and parenting these three wise ones has been something that has happened while I wasn't looking, meaning I haven't had any stories to tell.
On the bright side, this must also mean I haven't screwed it up too badly lately.
As tends to happen, though, when things are running along smoothly, one or more of children will pop their heads up, realise that all has been quiet on the Western Front for too long already, and some NOISE needs to be made, some TROUBLE needs to be had. You can't let harmony run along for too long, it might start believing it belongs around here.
Last night, we heard a thump. Not unusual around here... unlike most folks, we don't reach for the baseball bat, we reach for The Confiscation Bag. (Clearly, since it happens often enough that we have a bag for the purpose, confiscating toys is not actually that effective. But, cut us a break, at the end of a gruelling day, creativity levels are low.)
We tiptoe down the passageway. Without the element of surprise, we have nothing. The Husband flings the door open.... and catches the three-year-old halfway out the window. Again. She is stuck. We fight the urge to leave her there overnight, and The Husband reaches out to pull her down. And gets poo on his hands. The blessed child has painted her hair with poo. I'm not going to tell you what he said, but the three year old learnt some fine synonyms for 'poo' last night.
Tonight, she went to bed without dinner. I can't remember exactly what sin led her there, but whatever it was, she wasn't happy. It's always slightly reassuring when a punishment we inflict results in a reaction - tears are good, wailing is better, but, boy, tonight we hit jackpot. Half an hour later when we took the four year old to bed, the three year old was laying down, looking resolutely at the ceiling. Her face was covered in blood. I gasped and asked her what happened. She stonily replied, "I had a blood nose."
I asked her how it started and she turned to me and looked at me with a cold, slightly satisfied expression on her face. "I put my hands on my wardrobe, and banged my nose on the mirror until it started bleeding." She then turned away with the victorious air of someone who has conquered.
Later, I phoned my friend. She works for DCP, and I figure that if I tell her all my stories and she doesn't put my kids in The Confiscation Bag, I'm doing alright. I tell her a lot of stories. She's kind of my litmus test for parenting.
I asked whatthehellIamsupposedtobedoingwiththischildofmine. She said to me that, according to some professional development she recently undertook, if we get it right with our kids just thirty percent of the time, they will be fine.
Thirty percent? All this time, and my expectations have been way too high. Thirty percent. It's like a weight has lifted from my shoulders.
So, tomorrow, I'm just going to parent like crazy until morning tea time, then they are on their own.