Monday, October 25, 2010

Yes Mom

For me, one of the unfortunate side-effects of being a parent is the number of times I have to say "no" or otherwise respond negatively toward my children.

"No, you may not have soda with your dinner."
"No, we can't 'pretend' we did school today."
"Stop it."
"Cut it out."
"Quit fighting/whining/talking back/being disrespectful/kicking my seat/hitting your sister/etc."

I could go on. You probably could, too. It's not that I want to respond negatively toward my children; it just seems to be a side-effect of parenting.

So, lately, I've been trying to consider my "no's." Am I saying "no" out of necessity (no, you can't eat candy for breakfast) or out of convenience (no, we can't stay at the playground for ten more minutes)? I've been trying to choose to say "yes" when I can. In the past month, I've said yes many more times than usual:

"Yes, we can go to the museum."
"Yes, we can pick apples."
"Yes, we can watch a movie and eat pizza in the family room."
"Yes, we can bake a pie."
"Yes, I can make butterbeer for trunk-or-treat." (Which, by the way, was an absolute hit and completely exhausting at the same time).

The side-effect of all my "yes's" is a little more acceptance of the "no's." There's still some grumbling. The sibling fights haven't stopped. But, there's a lot more laughter going on around here. And, I am enjoying my kids so much more.

Yes, I definitely prefer being a "Yes Mom."

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