Thursday, March 5, 2009

excuse me sweetheart, won't you please PUT YOUR SHOES ON!!!

There was a time when I fantasized about travelling the world – meeting adventure and intrigue along the way. Now I fantasize about walking into any bathroom in my house and finding a flushed toilet. (This is followed closely in the rankings by finding that a dish has made it to the dishwasher without the mandatory stop in the sink – but that’s a marital, not a parenting issue.) Believe me, it’s not like I’ve never pointed out the importance of flushing to my children…it’s only one of long list of things that get said but somehow never heard. I can just hear the parenting experts now saying that we shouldn’t nag our children and we need to hone our messages, etc. etc. The question is – how do we refrain from nagging our children while setting expectations for behaviour – or getting through the day for that matter. Are we meant to settle for the bathroom surprise?

Recently a career mom that I know and love told me with exasperation that her son never puts his shoes on when asked. With a heavy heart she told me that she is sure this is because she works out of the home and isn’t able to manage discipline during the work week. I laughed. Hard. I’m a mom who gets her kids off to school each morning and I assured her that the sentence ‘please put your shoes on’ has never been uttered fewer than 8 times before working in my house – each time with increasing volume and exasperation. I’ve been asking around – and apparently there are legions of children who won’t put their shoes on when asked – I’m beginning to wonder if this is even a global phenomenon (my mind is drifting to children in Fiji refusing to put their flip flops on…).

So what is a beleaguered mom to do? I’m of the firm belief that we moms are hardest on ourselves. I am trying to learn to be kinder to myself and more accepting of the many imperfections of life. Maybe I don’t need to accept that my kids don’t flush or put their shoes on when asked – but maybe I can try to accept that I’m going to have to keep reminding them. Again. And Again.

Admiral Road has been making personalized blankets since 2002.

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