NOTHING in the world makes my heart soar like when my daughter shares a parenting story with me and the thinking behind what she is doing.
This is SO good that I must share it with the world.
When I was parenting, I always TRIED (and that means I did not always succeed), to make the punishment fit the crime.
But those days are so over, and now we are into rewards programs – not unlike the Visa rewards you amass for “good behavior.” My daughter does not believe in rewarding good behavior simply because you MUST behave and really deep down inside, you want to behave properly.
BUT…My grandson is strong willed and he is willfully not paying attention to his toilet training.
When he was being poopy trained, he got to play with play dough. That MAKES SENSE!
But now he doesn’t care about having peeing accidents. So, my daughter made a chart. He earns one sticker if he needs to be reminded or prodded and two if he initiates _ (GOOD THINKING TO DIFFERENTIATE between those two kinds of behavior). He was able to pick between two kinds of trucks that he wants as the reward. A picture of what he chose is on top of the chart and he gets to place and count the stickers. (NOW he is also learning math and basic financial planning!!!!)
As a reward for controlling and mastering his urinary urges, HE CHOSE TO REWARD HIMSELF WITH A FIRE TRUCK THAT HAS A WORKING, SQUIRTING HOSE that he will control.
He may or may not be learning the early concept of symbolism but YOU get it!!!!!
Do you know the commercial where a young mother is holding a cell phone and walking out of a house? She asks her mother about the house that had been on the market. It might even be the house next door. (PLEASE do not ask me what the commercial is selling. I can’t remember what I had for breakfast and besides whether it is a realtor or a phone company or dog food, it it irrelevant to my point!). Her mom tells her the house sold. The daughter says: “I know” and walks out of the house, up to her mom, kisses her, and lets her know that she was the buyer!
Well, that has become my favorite commercial ever since my cousin’s daughter moved into an apartment in the same condo building as my cousin. Why did her daughter do that? So that when her oldest gets dropped off from school, he can go directly to his grandparents and she can continue to work carefree for the rest of the day.
Am I the only mom who is wishing and hoping that will happen to her? I go to open houses in our neighborhood and pray.
I remember how hard it was to be a single mom, raise a daughter, and work two jobs.
Every time I call my daughter, I ask her if there is anything we can do to help. And every time, she tells me she is fine. That is how I know she is not yet mature. When you are truly mature, you can’t believe that anyone else is actually OFFERING help and you don’t hesitate – the definitive “yes” just pops out and you feel such relief and gratitude.
I have this theory that you take the average life span and you divide it in half. The first half you are just growing up and the second half you are an adult. Prehistoric man lived maybe thirty years. So, they became became adults when they were in their teens. Since we are living on average into our 80s, we can’t expect our “adult children” to be really mature until they are middle aged!!!!! I don’t know you feel about it, but my theory explains an awful lot of ridiculous behavior!
The only person who knows what it is like to be a working mom is a mother who worked. So, I know.
How many of you would like to babysit your grandkids? I know I would love to. But in order to make that work, you have to live nearby. And your kids have to want it and they have to be appreciative.
I have met two mothers who are doing it. Their daughters gush over them and tell everyone that they could not work and raise their children without their mothers.
I want to be that mother and grandmother.
I want a close relationship with my grandkids. I want to be a part of their lives AND I want to help my daughter. I would help ALL working young mothers if I could because I am not sure that the hodgepodge arrangements we have in place are honestly “working”
My daughter and her husband are in their thirties. They named my grandson Graham after no one. However, his middle name is his father’s father’s name. I tell myself that they really named him Graham after my father, Jerome. “G” is kind of like “J.” And both names have “r” and ‘m.” I tell this to myself so often that I really believe it and I have in turn told this to my grandson, so that a piece of my father, lives through him, and my grandson has roots.
I am a gardener and I know that the deeper the roots, the stronger the plant.