As we all know, when we have kids, we as parents are their first teachers and the kids are experiencing everything for the first time. Whether it be the first time they experience snow, a balloon, or a challenging social situation. No matter what it is that they are experiencing there’s a first for everything.
I remember, more than I like to, the moments when my boys pitch a fit when we have to leave a place where they are having so much fun and when they did that I would feel really hurt and therefore frustrated as well. I would think, “How dare they be so ungrateful. I didn’t have to bring them here in the first place, and here they are pitching a fit. Well this isn’t going to fly.” Then I remembered that kids live in the NOW, and of course they wouldn’t want a good time to end. Who would?
What an amazing opportunity for a teaching moment!! So I sat them down and explained that I didn’t have to bring them there in the first place, and they should be grateful for getting the opportunity and thank me for bringing them. Furthermore, if I see they are appreciative then I would be more than likely to take them back again. So fun followed by a “Thank You” would result in a return trip.
As with anything else you try to teach a child you always have to say it more than once, and in my case I drill it into the boys heads time and time again. So every time we leave from somewhere and we get in the van then I prompt them, “What do you say to Mom for bringing you here so you can have fun?” Of course they say “Thank You,” and I follow it with a kiss and “You’re Welcome.”
There have been a few situations where family members have taken one or all of my boys on an outing and have commented on how surprised they were when they got a “Thanks for taking me here.” These are the moments where all my hard work pays off, and I’m a proud Mom. Then this proud Mom makes it a point to let him/them know how proud I am that they remembered to say “Thank You” on their own.
It’s always a nice feeling when you know your parenting is working, because most of the time I doubt myself or wonder if I’m doing the right thing at any given moment. Phew!! I got an A+ on that one and hopefully by me sharing you’ll get one too.