My son E is not lacking for entertainment ever. Most of you that know him and his energetic spirit, know this already. He does things that make me wonder what he was thinking. And usually- I really don't think he's thinking. He's 4.... so in his defense, thinking is not the most important thing to do. Trying new things out and experimenting is how it goes for him. I envy his courage. I am not like this. I am a thinker first and foremost.
We went on a hike over the summer to a pretty little waterfall. It was small enough that if you wanted you could stand right under it. However- it's glacier water and FREEZING cold. So of course, Daddy thought it would be interesting to see how far our kids would go to be able to play their game-boys. (We rarely let them play, so this offer is like gold to them.) Daddy said that if they could stand completely under the waterfall, they could play when we got back. Our oldest boy, A, was very excited by the idea-- well, both boys were. So, A wandered close to the falls several times. At one point he did get close enough to have some of the water splash on his head. This was good enough for him. Buuut, not good enough to be able to play his game-boy. He was heartbroken, but not willing to get more wet. His brother however-- totally hyped up by watching his older brother make an attempt, ran up to the falls and after a few looks at his challenge, he ran full on under the waterfall.
I was shocked.
At first he was so taken aback by the freezing cold that he couldn't make a sound. He sucked his breath in and frantically began to run away from the water. Rocks are slippery when wet, in case you didn't know, so naturally he slipped at least once. And, just like he was being chased by the Texas Chainsaw murderer himself, he was up again and running. No place in particular. Just away. He finally let out a death wail straight from hell, slightly oriented himself to where we were, and came toward us. This wasn't too difficult since I was already coming to him to rip off his ice cold shirt and get him in the sun. Once in the sun he stopped shaking and found another thing to distract himself with. Not even myself or Dad could go under the falls. I honestly didn't try, I got close enough to feel the icy water on my hands and that was enough for me. What a crazy kid.
So.... some of you people might think this was mean. Let me stop you right there and remind you, he had every bit of freewill to do what he wanted. And he made his choice. He was fine about 30 seconds after I took off his cold, wet shirt. And he was excited to play his game-boy. It was worth it to him.
Example # 2.
This next story, is only funny, because it ended well. This is a shining example of a time that little E tried first to see if something was a good idea. Learned that it was not. And I am certain he will never do it again. (I hope) A and E are the best of buds and they play a lot together. It just so happened that a few days ago they were playing upstairs in their room. Being boys. And after about an hour of playing, Daddy and I hear a shrill scream coming from E, neither of us even batted an eye-- mostly because he screams like this ANY time that is big brother does something he doesn't like or hurts him in some way. But then A came running down the stairs and said frantically, "E is stuck on my bed! He can't get down." So of course, I'm thinking, 'great, he's probably hanging upside-down on the ladder or too scared to get off the top bunk.' Daddy ran up the stairs with A to help E down. Then I hear Daddy tell A, "Go get your mom, quick." That's when I jumped up and ran upstairs to see what the trouble was. I come into the boys' room and see E, hanging there between the wall and the bunk bed. I couldn't see his head, just his body wiggling wildly, trying to get his feet on something for leverage, hollering like a wounded animal. Daddy was under the bed, supporting his weight by this time. This did not mean that the frantic wiggling stopped. My mind went straight to thinking, 'I have to move the bed away from the wall. I need to get his head out of there now.' I tried once with Daddy still on the bed. Couldn't get it to move. I mean.... I'm not very big and he's a guy- he's not exactly small, plus our bunk bed is old and heavy. He told me to wait, he would get off, he just wanted to find something for E to put his feet on. I didn't want to wait that long. So I tried again and pushed the bed away from the wall enough for him to slip his head down. This meant like an inch. I felt like the Hulk. haha
After all the excitement- I couldn't help but laugh a little. Of course of ALL my kids, it would be E that would get his head stuck trying to climb down from a bunk bed the wrong way. Knowing that he was going to be OK, I was able to go back in my memory and relive what I saw initially and see the humor in the situation. Scary yes, but he tried something. Thank heavens he was able to learn from his mistake and it wasn't more serious than some sore ears and a legitimate fear of the bunk bed and the wall. :)
Example # 3.
Last one. A little more light-hearted for everyone. I asked A to take out the garbage for me at night. So, it's dark. And the garbage bin is back in our driveway away from the house and there's no lighting over there. A has a healthy fear of the dark. I'm not sure why or what he's got in his mind that has convinced him the dark is terrifying. It's rather inconvenient when you're trying to get chores done and your helper stands at the door, with it open, letting all the cold in moping because he doesn't want to take the garbage to the dark trashcan. So E who is also deathly afraid of the dark has a moment of bravery and tells A, "it's OK. I'll show you. It's not scary at all." And he bravely grabs the garbage and took it out. I was so proud of him! He took on a scary thing for himself and conquered it! And of course he waltzed back (or rather ran- because he was still scared) and told A, see, "You just go like that. It's not scary."
E constantly reminds me it's ok to do things with a squiggly line instead of a straight one. And I love him for it. And sometimes, I have to admit, it stresses me out to the max. It's not easy to parent someone that really doesn't care for your idea that he needs to be parented. I have a feeling that E and I are going to have to learn a lot over the next decade or two on how to understand each other. Why can't my children just come out thinking just like me????
~Can't remember if I shared this one yet or not: A stole something from the store yesterday... so I get to go with him to return it later today. When I told him he was in trouble, he asked, "You're not going to call the police are you??" And before I could say anything, E looks forlornly at him and says, "Yeah, she is."
~October 29th, 2013
Our littlest boy hasn't been on here yet. And he's pretty cute. So he get's a spot. A.M is still drinking out of a bottle. He's 13-months-old and still attached to the things. I went into the kitchen to give him some milk since he was all sorts of annoyed at me. When I gave him his bottle, he grabbed it, and walked out the the kitchen, laughing triumphantly like some evil little elf that had just pulled one over on someone. :)
E rubbed toothpaste all over my just cleaned bathroom counter tonight. We'll forget right now that this means most of his teeth did not get cleaned, because all of the toothpaste was on my counter. I was pretty ticked and feeling fairly justified in my anger since he does this ALL the time. I snapped at him to clean it up and to not rub toothpaste all over my house! (yes I have found it rubbed on my walls before.) He yells back at me: This is not your house! Everything belongs to Jesus!
Papa K and my cute oldest boy, A and cute middle son E went shopping while he was watching them for us. Each got to push their own little shopping cart. A was the only one with something in his cart, milk. Both boys, being my kids of course, were running all over the grocery story. So Papa asked them to slow down. A says to Papa, "I know, if I go too fast, I'll turn the milk to butter."