Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Saying Yes

I say no all the time. All day long. And my yesses all come with qualifiers, as in, "Yes, we can play Wii but only after I clean the kitchen" or "Yes, you can have a snack but only after you eat something healthy" or some bullshit like that. All the while hoping she'll forget about it and find something else to do. I haven't enjoyed playing with my kids that much lately. I know that's a terrible thing to say but it's true. Of course it's due to the cold and the snow and the fact that we're shut-ins most of the time. In addition to all that, I have other things I want to do and I spend my whole day trying to get them involved in something so I can do my own thing. I am rarely successful. Because of this, I decided to start saying yes.

It worked, somewhat. Talia wanted to play "pin the donkey on the tail." I mean, how long does it really take-- 5 minutes? 10? 15? It turned out to be really fun. I drew a bullseye on some paper and got out a few stickers. When it was my turn I made a big show of going to the complete opposite side of the room and sticking my sitcker on the window. The other time I stuck it in Talia's hair. She laughed her ass off. We let Alex play without a blindfold and he won. Talia wanted to play Uno tonight (she knows better than to ask to play Candyland. That's what I pay Supergirl for). So we played Uno. It's a fast game, she can beat me fair and square (once in a while) and I can easily adjust my play to make the game quick or long. She wanted to read three books. So we read three books. They're books, right? Reading is, of course, a major value of mine. So I still had no time to do anything for myself. I'm slightly worried that she'll think we should read three books tomorrow and I'll have to say no. But she was a really good girl today-- really good. I kept praising her behavior and helpful attitude. It was nice.

Alex, however, is another story. Let's say he's "asserting his independence." For him I really do have to say no-- if I let him play with the Chapstick even once he thinks it's his god-given right to smear it all over his face all day. He's in one of those periods of quick cognitive growth-- acquiring language and learning how to communicate. He's even using his few sing language words more now. He just all of a sudden figured out what communication is. Now that he can tell us what he wants (through words, pointing, gestures, signs, stamping his feet etc.) he *really* wants his desired object. Especially my new Blackberry phone, my ipod, my camera, the computer, etc. See a pattern here? So I'm trying to set limits, at least for the important stuff. Or the messy stuff at least. Or at the very least, the most most most important stuff. I'm trying to correct the mistake I made with Talia (too few- let's be honest- no limits) by being different with Alex. That is, when I have my act together. Which isn't all that often.

Remind me to tell you the story about Alex shitting on the floor today. My fault entirely. But that's another post.
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Ann's Rants said...

Great job, today. With saying "yes" and the post. I need to start over tomorrow. I was such a biyaaatch to Elliott today. His almost-5 sassiness, whining, and begging is driving me to insanity. The Groundhog better see his shadow or not--whatever entails early spring. DING. Post idea! Gotta run!

Ann's Rants said...

So I linked this post on my post today. I thought this sounded eerily familiar and its because I started a post about saying Yes this past weekend.

So you helped me finish a post, and gave me my idea for my Groundhog post (a work in progress).

Thanks, Nikki!