I was a “yes” mom today. Which is a big event around here. I am rarely a “yes” mom (I think this is unfortunate sometimes). I feel like I am always saying, “No, No, No.” I am very type A – a rigid rule follower and rule maker. I want rules, and I want my rules (and schedules) to be followed. (Ask me how often this works out.) I was the person who said, “When I have kids they will NEVER act this way.” HA! If you don’t have kids, don’t ever say that. Some things I have had to say to my kids:
“How did the potty seat get stuck on your head?”
“Yes, if your finger is up your nose – that IS picking your nose.”
“You ATE deodorant?!”
Still I try – we need rules, rules, rules. Now don’t get me wrong, kids need boundaries. Boundaries and guidance are very important. However, boundaries can be flexible. We parents should allow our kids to be kids and not rule following robots. I do expect my kids to be well-behaved, show respect, and do their best at school; however, I do not have to throw a book of rules at them to achieve this. Sometimes, this can be achieved by simply saying yes.
So today on a rainy day during Spring Break, I said yes.
At first I did say no.
I had sent my youngest out to put her bike in the garage. She put her bike back but did not come back inside. When I went out to get her, I found her playing in the rain and splashing in mud puddles. Having a great time. (Splashing in the mud without a care in the world is totally her personality; she was the one with the toilet seat on her head.)
My first reaction was, “What are you doing?!” (My brain reacted – mud, wet, mess, agggh!!) But then I remembered how she is always wanting to play and splash in the puddles. I changed my thought process. Hmmm, it is not storming, it is pretty warm, and it IS Spring Break. “Go for it. You can play in the rain.”
“What?” she said, obviously shocked. “YAY!!”
The other two quickly jumped into the action. “What? We can play in the rain?”
All three of my kids ran outside and jumped in puddles with wild abandon. Soon a rousing game of mud tag had begun. They played until they were soaked and had a great time.
Now they are in the kitchen creating some chicken dish for lunch and have prepared a banana nut cake for dessert.
I think I will have to say yes more often.