Okay, so it wasn’t like she dropped the F-bomb or anything. She said, ‘damn it’. And she said it twice.
Dave and I are really conscious of language around Curly-locks. She’s like a sponge at the moment, absorbing everything around her. And her memory … it’s insane the things she remembers. Elephants ain’t got nothing on her.
So, when she spilled some water from her Snow White cup yesterday and said ‘damn it’ in an agitated voice, I stopped in my tracks. At first I wasn’t quite sure I’d heard her properly, so I let it go. Then again this morning when she spilled porridge on her new ballerina pyjamas, she said ‘damn it’ again.
She was obviously mimicking me thinking that’s just what you say when something doesn’t go quite right. When I heard the second ‘damn it’ I thought I better nip this in the bud before she’s running around daycare saying, ‘Damn it Miss Mel, I’ve got sand in my shoes again’. I told her that it’s a naughty word and not nice for little girls to say. She looked at me with a blank face. Seeing I wasn’t getting anywhere, I suggested that next time she spills something or has an accident it’s best to say ‘Oh dear’ or ‘Whoopsy doops’ :). Fingers crossed this does the trick.
I know there are bigger things to worry about and it’s not such a big deal, but it reminded me of the massive influence we have as parents on our children. I know our girls get a lot of their awesomeness from me :), but I have started to worry lately that some of my not so awesome traits may be rubbing off too. I have a tendency to be a bit of a control freak, you see. I like to know exactly what’s happening when and why. I like to plan ahead. I run a pretty tight ship here and routine is key to keeping me and the kids calm. I do feel every now and then though that I’m rushing the girls a little too much. ‘Hurry up and eat your lunch, we’ve got to get Smiley to bed’, ‘Hurry up and brush your teeth’, ‘Quick put your shoes on, we’ll be late!’
Do you ever hear yourself and groan? Well, that’s what I’ve been doing lately wondering if I’m unnecessarily rushing and stressing the girls.
When Curly-locks was playing with her dolls the other day and told them to ‘Quick, quick, hurry, hurry’, I felt a bit queasy in the stomach.
I really hate this part of me. I hate that I always have to be early or on time. It is so bad that my throat tightens and I get short of breath if I know I’m going to be late. Unfortunately, I’m not kidding or exaggerating. It’s a real problem for me and I don’t want to pass this onto the girls.
So, I guess recognising this is an issue for me is the first step forward. I am going to try to be conscious of how much I rush the kids from now on. In saying that, I just busted my gut getting home from the shops in time to put Smiley into bed at 1pm on the dot for her afternoon nap. Small steps hey?!
It’s just lucky I happened to marry one of the most chilled out people around. ‘That boy is so laid back he’s almost horizontal’, my Gran once said. Here’s hoping some of this laid back nature will rub off on me.
Please tell me I’m not alone. Have your kids embarrassed you with a few choice words? Are you conscious of the influence you have on their personality?