Monday, April 29, 2013

Life Lessons

the other day, cade and i ran a few errands after school.
he got a hair cut. 
he had a few dollars to burn so, we stopped in toys r us to get him a little skate board thing he wanted. 
but, they didn't have it. 
his second choice was to go to jc penney to get a t-shirt he saw in the recent circular.
but,  they didn't have it.  {it wasn't his day.}
however, my little shopper quickly found a few other items to fill his buying needs. 
within ten minutes he had $50 worth of treasures.
treasures he had to have.
the rest of the afternoon unfolded like this:

me:  ok honey, those are good things...but, nothing you came here for.  let's wait and come back in a few days.  they are expecting a shipment and the t-shirt should come in tonight or tomorrow.

him:  but, i really like all of these things. can't i just get these too?

me:  no.  you have $50 worth of stuff...I'm not doing this.  you don't need any of it.

him:  {tears starting}  but, i like these things.  how about just the shorts.  they are only $10.

me:  ok.  i'll do that.

him.  {crying}  but, i can't help it.  i want it all. and i want to come back and get some vans and that t-shirt.

me.  i'm not doing this.  shorts or nothing.

him:  fine!  {tears and attitude}

me:  that's it.  we are getting nothing.  let's go.

the nice clerk {who was standing within ear shot} politely took the shorts as i escorted my eight and a half year old son out the door...crying.

once in the car, his awesome behavior continued. 
he enthusiastically said, "i hate my life!" " just drop me off somewhere!" 
and, the best one, "i hate you!"
he quickly took back that last comment....yelling, "wait!  i didn't mean it  i didn't mean it!  i'm sorry.  my anger just got in the way!"

i remained calm.  very calm. {this would normally push me over the edge and i would begin yelling.}
i said, "hhmmm...ok. honey, why don't you grab your water bottle.  you are probably thirsty."

him:  no!

me:  maybe grab your snack.  you are probably hungry.

him:  no!

and so, i began to drive.  but.  i didn't drive home.
he soon realized we were not going the right direction and asked where we were going.  i told him we were going to take a little field trip.

i took him to guadalupe. 

as i slowly drove down the streets...he became quiet.

me:  you said you hate your life and you wanted me to drop you off somewhere...well....here you go.  see all the people sitting outside?  it's hot and they probably do not have air conditioning.  look at their houses and the little areas they  have to play.

towards the end of one street, we came upon a group of boys playing baseball in a tiny, dirt yard.

me:  look at those boys.  they probably have one pair of shoes.  you know all of the sports equipment you have?  they don't have it.  all of the $40 hats you have?  they don't have those either.  all of the games you get to attend? they don't.  but, look.  they are still smiling.  they seem to appreciate life more than you right now.

him:  {at this point, soft tears begin to fall.}  i feel horrible.  i want to go home.

me:  good.  but, i think we have one more street to go.

as we drove home cade said, "this was a bad afternoon for me.  was it for you too?"

me:  yes.  it's never a good afternoon when my little boy has tears.  we all have bad afternoons...and it's best to pick ourselves up by our bootstraps and learn from them.

we finally headed home.  as we pulled in to the garage of our nice, air conditioned home...he began to cry.  again.

him:  are you going to tell daddy?

me:  no.  you are.  i want you to go in like a young man and tell him about your afternoon.

him.  no...he'll get mad at me!

me:  no he won't.  not if you go on like a young man and talk to him.

and sure enough...he didn't get mad. 
of course, it took cade a while to make it in to mr. collum. 
{i had already given mr. collum a heads up.}
he handled it beautifully.
both of my boys did good.