Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Mom Lesson #243

 The other night was a bad one.  I had gone into darling daughter #1's room to help them get ready for bed and kicked something on the floor and hurt my foot.  That was the straw that broke the camels back.  I looked at her and said...."three times!  That's three times in a row I have hurt myself when I have come in here.  No more!"  And I walked out.  I was too angry to think, and I didn't want to say anything that I would regret later.

Let me say this before I go farther.  I hardly ever get angry.  It takes a lot for me to even raise my voice.  Tom and I try realy hard to keep things calm and nice over here.  It works for us.  I'm not saying we don't get mad - we do.  We just try and teach our kids right from wrong before it gets so bad that yelling comes into play.

About 5 minutes later I went back into "the pit" as I call her room and said she doesn't get to keep anything that's on the floor and started picking everything up and throwing it into the hall.  Clothes, ipod docking station, pillows, toys, stuffed animals, guitars etc.  It all came out.  I talked to her about "tough love" and how some parents have to take everything out of the room and the child has to earn it back.  I just took what was on the floor.

I then had her get ready for bed while I cooled off even more.  You see, my one pet peeve in this house is a messy room.  I-can't-stand-it!  I have to have things neat and tidy.  Yes, there is a little everyday clutter around, life clutter - backpacks, lunch boxes, school papers, my sewing machine on the kitchen table (that's been there for 2 weeks) I'm not overly OCD but I want the people in this family to pick up after themselves.  That's not so wrong is it?

I talked to her about how she will have a house someday.  She will have a family that she will need to take care of.  Having chaos and mess all around just doesn't work.  My friend said it best when she told me, "it's her job as a child to have a messy room and it's your job as a mother to teach her not to."  True Chelsa - Oh so true!

Daughter #2 had made a bed on the floor in my room and went to sleep since this was taking up most of the night.  (her room is being used my her Uncle at the moment).


I also talked to Daughter#1 about The 5 Love Languages  That is one great and marvelous book!  It has taught me so much about how to interact with people!  I told #1 that her love language is "gifts"  Nothing wrong with that...........but I always have a hard time buying her things (showing her I love her) because I know it will just get lost, broken or thrown on the floor.  it won't get taken care of.  Therefore I don't buy her things which shows her "I don't love her"  if we are talking love languages here. (cause I do love her - A LOT!)  See the cycle?  Well, we talked about it and she is going to try harder.

Last night we went through her closet, got rid of two garbage bags of clothes, stuffed animals and garbage.  We aren't done yet but already her room feels lighter, brighter and I'm not afraid that I'm going to kill myself when I go in there.  There is still a pile of stuff in the hall that we need to go through but I'm fine with baby steps if it helps her learn to be organized and want to keep things clean.

Do you think I was too hard on her?  I really feel like I did the right thing.  We had a very deep and meaningful heart to heart and I think she understands how important this is for her own future.  Not just for her crazy clean Mom.

I know one thing for sure, buying Easter dresses this weekend will be a lot more fun knowing that she will be trying hard to keep it off the floor! :)

4 comments:

Let Your Hair Down said...

my mom use to do this. Everything in garbage bags. We never thought we would get it back. Sometimes it would be months before we would. its a good lesson. good work!

AZ Smurfette said...

Awe! The love in your home is HUGE! you are such a good Mom!! :) xo

Sarah said...

No, I think honestly, that we mothers all have to have a little "freak out" once in awhile...especially when there has been an ongoing problem that has NOT been resolved, in spite of our advice, reminders, kind protests. I do this with rooms...and with manners at the table...and with bedtime.
I love the Love Languages also..did you know there is one about kids? It's great.

Mardi said...

The same exactly thing happens in our home with Daughter #1. I thought they were suppose to be the example for the younger siblings..... She is definately a work in progress.