Sometimes we give Samantha a hard time. We raise our voices, tell her off, discipline her by taking away a privilege. It's not because she's bad. It's usually because we know she knows better. It's frustrating for us sometimes because she knows right from wrong most of the time. We ask her not to do something and we explain why she shouldn't do something, ad nauseum.
Be certain of it, she knows.
We're fortunate, as a couple, as her parents, that we agree on pretty much everything concerning raising her to be a happy, healthy child. She really wants to please us, and often the best discipline of all comes from her knowledge that we're disappointed in her, or in something she's done, or a bad decision she's made. If I ask her what my job as her mommy is, she'll tell you, "To keep me safe."
We're also fortunate, as a family, that her impulse control issues are not as bad as some we've seen or heard about with other kids. But they're there.
Don't touch that... "But I *have* to!"
Don't hug the cat - you *know* she doesn't like it and will run away... "But I *have* to!"
When you're finished with that book, you need to go brush your teeth. (big, exaggerated sigh) "Oooookaaaaay!!!!" (a new book gets started) Samantha, now! "Moooommy, I'm *busy!*"
When is it okay to touch Mommy's camera? "Never." Right.
There are so many more examples, but you get the general picture. Some of the examples I could give are far more serious than these, but at the moment I can't think of any (guess that's illustrative of my next sentence).
But there's the definite need for us to keep things in perspective. She's a kid, and all kids do things like this.
Last night, Steve said to me, "You know, she's really a good kid. We're hard on her, but we have to remember, she's a really, really good kid."
And she is.
That statement doesn't mean she won't be disciplined for misbehaving or not listening, but it's a reminder to pick our battles, don't sweat the small stuff, and continue to celebrate the goodness that burns bright in her and makes her the amazing kid that she is.