Archive for August 9, 2012
You Will Not Be That Kid
My son is the cutest thing out there and he knows it. He’s a blonde, green eyed charmer who knows how to use it to his advantage. He‘s also a very sweet boy, who when he stops trying to be the class clown, is very sensitive and caring. Now I know this all sounds like a proud momma bragging – but there is a point. He’s also a very moody, sneaky, eight year old boy who has little patience, even less impulse control and a lack of understanding of consequences. Is he like any other typical eight year old boy? I don’t know the answer to that, but he is who he is.
We have had two incidents recently that have required me to put on my super absorbent big girl parent pants and re-enforce some clear rules and expectations of who my son will be and how he is expected to behave.
Every school has some kids that don’t necessarily fit in. Other kids don’t necessarily take to them easily and they are awkward in social situations. As parents, we know firsthand how kids don’t have filters when it comes to letting us know how they feel. Unless we teach them, they don’t understand the concept of empathy and being kind just because it’s the right thing to do. It’s our job as their parents to teach them how to behave.
My son was a part of a group playing with Star Wars and Transformer figures at the after school program he attends during the school year. When I arrived to pick him up, I noticed a boy sitting alone at a table clearly upset. The boy told me that the group of boys wouldn’t include him. I get that we can’t force our kids to be friends with everyone – that’s not fair to them, but we can teach them empathy and kindness.
On our way home I mentioned the incident to my son who quickly explained that he doesn’t have to be friends with everyone at school. I agreed with him, but asked him to think about how he would feel if he was that boy, and everyone around him refused to include him. I asked him to think about what feelings he would have. Would he be upset? Would he feel alone? Would it make him cry? What if that kid was me or another family member? Would he want someone he loves to be treated that way? He started to tear up when he really started considering the situation.
Just this week, my precocious son and a few of his buddies said some inappropriate things to a few of the younger girls at camp. The camp counselors intervened and the boys got in trouble. My son came home denying he had anything to do with it. He swore he didn’t say it and his friend was the perpetrator and lied to get him in trouble. He has never been disciplined for this sort of thing before, so we decided to focus on his side of the story and teach him to make better choices. We asked him why he would want to be friends with someone that lies and gets him in trouble. To think about whether or not that is the right kind of person to befriend and hang out with? And of course that what he said was completely inappropriate and unacceptable – period.
In closing both discussions, my husband and I made it crystal clear that he will not be that kid. The one who thinks it’s funny to pick on kids if everyone else is doing it. The one that goes along with the crowd. The one who gets in trouble for doing things that are just plain stupid. We expect more from him and will not accept anything less than empathy, kindness and some common sense. Do I expect his behavior to change overnight? Of course not – eight year olds are not even near fully developed mentally. But I believe that if you keep repeating, reminding and living your expectations, your kids will learn who they are destined to become, eventually.
I’m feeling about 80% like myself — and of course that means I go workout. Does it mean I should have gone –shrug! Along with being sick, I am going through a lot of self evaluation right now and not sure if that’s what is depressing me. I haven’t felt this down in a long time without a known cause. There is nothing blatantly wrong with my life –in fact things are going pretty well — and I have too much work to do. Maybe that’s it. Not enough quiet time to be with my thoughts, to be alone, to figure out decisions. I seem to always say to myself – next week it will be better but then it comes, and I am just as busy as the week before. There comes a time when you need to look at it all and realize that even though it’s all good, you can’t do it all. You accept you aren’t superwoman, you can’t take on the world, and you can’t change some things that are getting in your way. What do you do? You sit alone and get quiet and the answers should come — now to find some alone time, that’s another story.
About a year or so ago, my friend and coach Conan and I talked about managing things in your life — and the theory of lanes. It really helped me see things for what they are and give myself permission to let go of some of the stuff I put on my own plate at my own hand. The theory is that we each have lanes we are responsible for in life, at work, at home — other people have their lanes. Sometimes you want to help someone in another lane and they aren’t doing it the way you would do it or the way you think is right. Well in the end, it’s their lane and they are on the hook for whatever happens in that lane. It’s nice that you want to help or offer advice, but in the end if it blows up — no one will look to you and blame you because it’s not your lane. If you want to offer help or advice, it’s because you want to but it’s not because you are expected too. And sometimes, as hard as it is, you have to back off and let the person swim in their own lane, alone. They don’t want your help or advice –and that’s that. Learn when to walk away.
I am revisiting that approach this week — because sometimes I forget and start to get stressed out about things going on around me. It’s probably part of why I am so stressed out and I have to remember — it’s not my lane. Will it blow up without me and my help? Maybe yes, maybe no –but either way it’s not my lane. I’m going to go take a swim in my lane now…
Pull Up Progression
Double Under Practice
10 Pass Thrus
- 200m Run
- 7 Hang Clean
- 7 Push Press