Three Little Words
Monday, August 17, 2009
Ask this question of my 4 year old son, "Gryph who's the boss?" His answer without fail? "Mama!" Now, I'm not a tyrant, far from it actually. In fact, I've been accused of being overly lenient when it comes to my kiddo. Neither am I the only adult in his world who sets standards for him. His father and I are big believers in the whole "taking a village" to do it right. But the final word is mine..mwa ha ha ha..oh sorry...This kid has about 4 adults regularly bossing his little butt around. We have family meetings and do group emails to discuss different strategies for helping him overcome whatever hurdle he may be facing.
Make no mistake though, this ain't no democracy. It's a gentle dictatorship and you can just call me Mama Monocrat. I'm not sure how this form of home-government developed, but it works for us. I suppose a kinder description would be Matriarch, but I'm a little young and I have a lot to learn before I can claim such a lofty title. I always think of my grandmother when I think Matriarch and I have but a tenth of her grace and dignity on my best days.
I'm big on choices and independence in our house. I limit what choices are available to the monkey butt of course, but it's up to him to choose his activities and meal choices. He chooses his own clothes and has been known to proclaim, "Accessories are IMPORTANT!!!" when I try to rush him to make a decision about which of his plastic beaded necklaces will best compliment his sunglasses. For quite some time he felt it imperative to wear a shoe on each foot from separate pairs. Yeah... he was a BIG hit in the very traditional, small town we live in. Can I get a "hell yeah!" for a deep seated sense of self? Cuz any nippy comment he gets from a peer at school just earns them a snotty wrinkled, turned-up nose and a cold shoulder. He reads whichever books most appeal to him and as you can most likely piece together, he's encouraged to express himself using whatever words he feels best.
Except for these: Stupid, fat and ugly.
I will not tolerate them spoken in front of him and I absolutely, under no circumstances allow him to use them. They're such awful, hurtful words and I've yet to devise a way in which a kind sentence can be constructed using any one of them. I don't freak out about much as his mother, but you will know my wrath, which is mighty when stirred, if you degrade his inherent kindness.
I'm blessed that my babe is healthy, brilliant, funny and beautiful and I'm grateful. But what never ceases to stand me in awe is how sincerely compassionate he is.
And so Mama Monocrat embraces censorship to protect the child she never had to teach to share.