April 1, 2011

Children Remember....

We had an...incident this afternoon.

It was the way I handled it that was...the important thing.

Let me explain.....

I was standing at the kitchen window making a delicious lasagne for dinner. Mr C (aged 8) was kicking his football in the shed. (the kitchen donga faces into the shed, so I can be standing at the window at the bench looking out into the shed).

I must digress and point out that I ask/beg/plead with my son to take his football into the tennis court to play, instead of kicking it around in the shed.

You know where this is going, don't you?

So what happens? I'm standing there, grating cheese, marvelling at how awesome this lasagne looks, coming from someone like me who sucks at cooking, and suddenly...

The window smashes! Glass shards go everywhere...all over me.....all through the lasagne, sitting on the bench in front of me..and all over the floor.

For the longest moment, I stand there looking out of the hole in the window, at my son, who is standing there, frozen in horror..looking back at me through the hole in the window.

He brings his hands up to his face and starts to sob "I"m so sorry mummy, I'm so sorry, I'm so sorry".....

My boy is not a cryer.....this is big.

I realised there and then, the way I handled this was very important. And I remembered back to a moment in my childhood that is still with me to this day..I will explain shortly...

I looked through the jagged football sized hole in the window and said to my son "how many times have I asked you not to do this in here"?..

He knows....he knows....

"I'm so sorry mummy"..he is sobbing and distressed.

I walk out to him and gather him in my arms...he disolves against my shoulder..

"It's alright love....it was an accident"....It's okay..."

"Mummy I was aiming for the concrete block..but I was a bit off target" "I know, honey, I know"...

He goes to bed and lays down and cries..

I follow him and nurse him and hold him tight.... He is really upset...

This moment in time, to an 8 year old, is devastating....his little mind thinking the worst.

Windows and dinners can be fixed. Little minds and hearts and moments can not..

We move on..clean up and realise that this is life....

There is no way I will humiliate my child, to make him feel less than what he is..to make him feel unworthy....

Children remember these moments when they are little...experiences will stay with them forever........

There was a moment that I can still recall to this day, a time that for some reason I can remember...

I was in 4th class, and my teacher asked me to take a book to the office to have copied. (Mrs Player - I'll name and shame because you made me feel like a cheap plastic toy).

I still remember the sunny day, walking to the office and suddenly I lost the page.

I had no idea which page she wanted to be copied.

I can still feel that sinking feeling in my stomach..

I walked back to her and said "I've lost the page"....

She snatched the book from me and berated me in front of the class..her angry voice telling me to "go and sit back down"..she was pissed off.....

I was 9.

And humilated. And embarassed. And bullied by someone bigger than me.

I can still remember how I felt. I refuse to make my children feel this way..because I know they will remember.

So now, the dinner was ruined. But my son knew that I loved him and it was okay. His heart was not broken like the window.
AMB blog carnival button

12 comments:

jules said...

What an awesome mommy you are...

Margaret (Peggy or Peg too) said...

you can always call for pizza.

this was a nice post. Want to be my mum?

Green Mama said...

Well done Mama, it's very hard not to fly off the handle every now and then. I think you deserve a big medal, or at the very least a parade.

Zoey @ Good Goog said...

Sometimes it's so important to pause. Particularly when there's beautiful, yummy lasagne involved. But I completely agree - in the long run what kids remember is so much more important.

Maxabella said...

You kept a cool head and a warm heart and that's all we ever need to do as Mummas. It's hard to do it in the heat of a moment. Anger surges, we see red. Your son is a lucky boy. x

Me 'N My Monkeys said...

You are such a wonderful Mumma!! xx

Caz (The Truth About Mummy) said...

Oh, that is just beautiful! You've made me cry - and I have no idea why!! Good on you mummy - you're doing a fabulous job.

myrelish said...

Great work, a little boys heart remains not only intact but full of love. I only hope that I can be just a little like you and think of this when I am about to lose my cool.

Tenille @ Help!Mum said...

It's so important to think before you act; sounds like you're doing a wonderful job.

Kel said...

And that is exactly what makes you a fabulous Mummy - because you remembered something that hurt you so bad and made sure you didn't pass it on to your little one. As you said - windows and dinners can be fixed. Little hearts can't.

Posie Patchwork said...

So true & in our house, nothing attracts bare footed children faster than broken glass!! What an idiot of a teacher didn't put a book mark in there, good GOD. What pisses me of is that she was paid to be with you, we parent for free & clearly, do a much better job!! Sometimes you just have the Brady Bunch fly through your head & think, no, Mrs Brady wouldn't scream, then again, she had Alice in the background making the lasagne. Love Posie

Melissa said...

We had a very similar incident tonight, and I'm proud to say, my husband and I handled it the same way you did.

I had many childhood moments like the one you described and they've left an indelible scar on me. One I refuse, absolutely, categorically refuse to bestow upon my children. I watch my siblings speak to their children in ways that break their tiny little hearts and I want to scoop them all up and keep them safe in our loving home.

Great post. Beautiful.