Monday, December 6, 2010

I Threatened to Cancel Christmas

It always happens on days where we have tons going on. Maybe it's the magic of the season, the anticipation of toys or being hopped up on sugar but the kids simply will not behave. No matter what- we talk to them, use gentle correction or time out. On this day, however, all the usual stuff was falling on cemented ears in my house.  Of course I was by myself. We'd put up the Christmas tree and Jay stayed until he helped me put the lights up- at that point I released him. Because he needed a haircut- heaven forbid one inch of hair cover that melon. Outside has turned frigid and gloomy, they are trapped inside. They're using the house as a race track/wrestling ring. If my sister ever moves out, I may just cover that entire room in padding and lock them in there when they get this way. I call them to come help decorate the tree. WC, doesn't want to. Wait, putting up the tree today was his idea. We all always decorate the tree together.  I'm not decorating it by myself. And CJ just hung 6 ornaments on the same limb, backwards. WC, sulks his way into the room and after a while begins to seem like he's enjoying himself. Of course, he and CJ get into a fight. WC storms off just before we're finished and refuses to return. I replace the Christmas music cd that had been playing- I'm trying to be festive, damn it, with Shrek the Halls. This lures WC back to the room, but not to decorating.  There's a slinky in the box of ornaments, why? The tree is up and the tree skirt is MIA. Add to list of stuff to pick up.
Up next is my 4 hour window to wait for the new dishwasher- the old one died and handle broke into pieces.The good news is that the boys have made up from their spat. The bad news is that they've made up from their spat and are now running at a full throttle energy that I can't even muster in my dreams. They are destroying faster than I can pick up/clean. Where did the footprints on the wall down the hall come from? Three broken ornaments in 30 minutes, leave them alone. Ornaments are not toys. They are worse now than as infants. After repeated attempts at restoring order I popped like a champagne bottle that's shaken furiously. The instant the pressure of the stress is released, I know my outburst was a mistake. I felt better- but it was still a mistake. The two stared at me like a pair slack jawed yokels with the same expression- you were serious, who knew? I soared past simply telling santa that they were naughty straight to the complete cancellation of the holiday. I said I'd put the tree away and everything. I stopped short of telling them that I'd shoot santa if he tried to slip in a toy. Neither of them genuinely believed that I would cancel Christmas, so not really an appropriate thing to threaten. I broke a rule of discipline- never threaten anything you aren't willing to follow through with. Many a parent gets in trouble with this one. The second thing I did wrong was have an emotional outburst. Never discipline during intense emotion- you will inevitably regret it.  It was not appropriate modeling of behavior. Guess they know I am not perfect and I have things that I need to work on too.

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