Make him stop looking at me…

If it hasn’t happened to you yet as a parent, just know it will. There will be a day when the arguing becomes so ridiculous a child will utter those words, and you will think, “Ah there it is.” 

This Summer has presented some large challenges when it comes to kid relationships. We have a complicated set up because we have a set of siblings and a third child that is the equivalent of a sibling without actually being related. These three boys have been in each others lives Monday – Friday for the past 7 years. They love like brothers, and they fight like brother. But lately it seems the emotional tug of war has ramped up to 11. Tee hee, sneaking in that reference because you can’t stop me. 

There has been much more shouting, many more tears, but just as much joy and laughter. I prefer the laughter, obviously it’s much easier to take. Even when the laughter is accompanied by the most rambunctious ridiculousness. You know the kind that leads to people vomiting because they are laughing so hard? No, not at your house? It’s talent, trust me. 

I suppose we have to wade through the difficult times to appreciate the highs of the joyful times. I guess that’s balance, right? It’s just difficult to see three boys who love and care about each other so much, struggle in their relationships with each other. Today we went form tickle wars on the floor, to 5 minutes later tears and screaming because someone used a water balloon in a not so nice way. I’m all for balance, but I guess smoother transitions would help this Mom/nanny out.

And maybe this is a blessing in disguise. Maybe all of this emotional turmoil is what is going to strengthen their bond. I mean, this is very true of siblings. We fight to the death, but we always have each other’s backs. We test the strength of the bond by pushing each other’s boundaries in order to reassure ourselves of the strength of the love.  So, instead of knocking all their heads together out of frustration, I’m going to encourage more thoughtfulness. I’m going to increase the value of listening to each other more. I’m going to require each child to show the other more empathy. And then when the wrestling matches breaks out, I’m going to say, “What the pickles!”  

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