12 June 2009

The View from Wits End

Wit's End. That's where I am. This has been one of those weeks when you realise how far you have let some things slide by taking the all-too-easy option of appeasing the little people. Then one day there's just one thing too many: a complaint, a fuss, a lie... in fact too much downright stubborn disobedience and insubordination. It has left you standing there feeling like your brain is about to explode and wondering when you handed control over to the children.

I mean, am I the mother or just the lackey??

Are the parents in charge or are we just the Go-to-Guys for little dictators? Since when do the kids get to tell me what they will and will not wear/eat/do?? Who rolled over and made them King??

I guess I must have. That's why the first rule of Government is Do Not Negotiate with Terrorists. I must have forgotten that.

So we have begun to re-instigate Extreme Measures.

The Big Boy was the first offender to reap the whirlwind of consequences for mutiny.

When he (a) refused to wear warm clothes to school (yet again); (b) threw all his fruit and yoghurt into the toilet rubbish bin before school and then (c) lied about (a) and (b)... I'd had enough.

I dropped him off at school, and returned home to take Dr Phil's advice and calmly remove everything from his bedroom. OK, not everything: I left him the bed and the chest of drawers, some books and a cuddly toy. I removed all his sports clothes, his soccer cards and all his toys and pictures. He came home to a very bare room.

There was a fair bit of crying and shouting ("It's not fair! I hate this family!" "You don't even love me!")... but when he realised that Mummy and Daddy were sticking together, standing firm and not about to be blackmailed or budged, the angry sad little lad calmed down and settled in to trying to earn his treasures back through good behaviour, obedience and truth-telling.

We are now into Day Three and his manners and attitude are remarkably different to the smart-mouthed little tyrant that was lurking around on Monday.

He has so far earnt back 8 soccer cards... and begun to draw pictures to stick on his bare walls (to make it look "neat").

Sigh. Take a deep breath and cross fingers.

Then there's that other little Madam. The Girl who is nearly off to school.

The one I take shopping for winter gear and who loves the clothes we buy while we are in the shop but as soon as we get home she refuses to wear them!!! Arrrggghhh!!! Socks and tights have annoying itchy threads, jeans are too uncomfortable, PJ's are worn once and then abandoned, slippers sit untouched in the shoe box. What a waste!!! So here I am again at Wits End.

I have been here before with her; Extreme Measures brought her into line. Drawers were stripped bare. Clothes had to be earnt back. She is on the brink of losing it all again.

I am trying one last thing before I do that... I have noticed that she loves to wear her friends clothes; so tomorrow I am doing a swap with her friend Yazzy's mum; a clothes swap. I'll swap her unworn rejected (lovely) clothes for some her buddy won't wear. Last chance, Princess! Schooldays are approaching. The time for Extreme Measures are at hand.

That seems to be the only thing for it, here at Wits End.

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Amy said...

I hear you Simone. I have camped at Wit's End aplenty. Grace and wisdom are gifts from God that we are so blessed to able to receive to see us through and He uses those little children to sandpaper our rough spots smooth. You're a good mummy :)

Sammy said...

What a fantastic post Simoney! I am learning so much about mother-hood from you. You are so real and honest and I am like a big sponge learning from you.
Make no mistake, you may be at Wits End right now, but you are truly an amazing, loving and wise Mommy!

Unknown said...

That is soooo great. I am going to try it too.xx

Gail said...

I know Wit's End well, my friend... as you well know! I'm working on taking the long route there amd hoping that the destination changes on the way!!
Great post!

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