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Saturday, September 27, 2014

Damage Control

 Have you ever impulsively bribed your kids ? well I did recently and then realized in a micro second  (s*** )what I have done !!!
 I wanted M now in grade 2 to revise her spelling lists for an upcoming championship and she was kind of dragging it and ....well to cut the long story short in a desperate moment to motivate her I told her that "she gonna get the book she so wanted to get if she won the championship " oopsssssssss . You see there are so many no nos in this one sentence
1.putting more emphasis on winning than on effort
2.If u do this I'll give you that ...Its a BRIBE not a motivation
3.It implies she has to do it for all the wrong reasons to please ME/ her mom not herself , for winning  not learning etc etc
4.And what if she does not win (  the other kids are smart and hard working too) would I really really want her not to have a book she so wants to have ?? - Like seriously)
5. and what if she does not win and I still get her that book? wont I loose her trust the next time , you know ... mama never follows through so I don't need to take her seriously???
hmmm a lot of damage in one sentence
6. ( Not to mention ) teaching her to bribe others to get things done her way.

Now if you have a young kid at home you'd know they never forget such things, and as the saying goes, you cant bring back a spent arrow and a spoken word this poor mama had to do a lot of thinking if the damage has to be controlled..... and after spending almost half a night thinking and contemplating my options ( OH how I wish I could just tell her to forget what I just said !! ) I came to the conclusion that at this point the best remedy is to simply correct my mistake , apologies tell her that I was going to get her the book anyway, and she should just do her work any way .Simple and I was good to go to bed!

By home time the next day I was again not so easy with my decision -- its not easy to let go of your mama-pride -- and what if all that above stuff is just kitabi batai as many of my friends comment on my parenting ideas...
It only occurred to me the next day while driving them to the book shop (it was a surprise) that this is an opportunity to turn a bribe back into motivation. I asked her if she knew why I brought them here and as nice this 7 year old is , she replied " I know you want to get a book for yourself but may I just look at the books in kids section ) yup kids, smart as they are , they know how to melt mommy's heart. Well lets cut the drama and come to point. I told her; no we are here so that she can get her book BECAUSE she had been working hard all those past weeks and mama just got upset that she was loosing interest now that its almost done, and I am sorry for being ghussa and guess she deserved a treat and a break may be.....  and" " yippie you are the best mom, I wont even read it before I am done with my work"   the rest I guess anyone can imagine :D
Result update : Well we are all done with our lists twice ( with 300 English and 200 Urdu words ) and there are still 3 days to the championships