Some days, being a step-parent is hard. Heck, some days being a parent period is hard. Well the other day we had an abnormally physical situation in our home. Children A & B had a friend over and whilst playing on the Wii one decided to be a sore loser and lashed out at the other. Child A punched child B, and child B proceeded to kick Child A in the stomach, not particularly the kind of behavior we tolerate in our household. Naturally social awareness has set in around this around age group and they’re more than willing to put on a show!
My immediate reaction was one of rage, I wanted to scream at them and make my rules known “How dare you put your hands on her” and “You know better.” But child B has these ridiculously beautiful brown eyes and the moment you raise your voice they widen and beg for mercy (they’ll be weapons of mass destruction one day). A thought raced through my head “teach them, don’t scream” well, the momentary desire to satisfy my need to be heard was quashed. After acknowledging my surrender to such a prompting I thought “alright, what then?” and immediately the answer came.
I sent them off for pens and paper, confused they did as they were told. When they returned I advised them that we were going to do things a little differently this time: they are going to write one another letters telling each other all the reasons they love one another.
Upon completion of the set task they came back in to the lounge, and read their letters to one another. Besides thinking to myself I’m out of my mind, the new approach gave them something to think about! They gave each other hugs, apologized and went back to the lounge to be with their friends. I heard the following commentary as they disappeared around the corner “well that was different…”, “yeah, let’s not do that again…”
I love these kids. I also love our new art work for the family wall planner.