Sunday, January 29, 2012

Choosing my battles

As a mom of two boys; one who runs wild, and the other who will soon follow, Ive learned to just let some things go. For example. Its not actually a big deal if Forest wants to jump on the couch with excitement because his favorite song came on. Do i let him do this at some one else house? No. Definitely not. Or, if he feels the need to stand during a structured class environment, I totally let him. No big deal. Do i let him block the view for other children who are sitting? No.
He's a unique individual who needs to be allowed a bit of freedom to express himself. This in return, helps him to actually hear me and respond when i need to correct him. (um hopefully)
Its called choosing my battles. It provides a much more enjoyable day for me, and for the kids.
Some might call this obnoxious. Thats ok with me. If obnoxious means that my sons feel free to express themselves (happy or sad), be independent, learn from choices, play how they need to play, feel satisfied and secure...then i consider it a day well done.

This next part is a bit controversial. Please refrain from creepy comments. Its my blog dude.

There is something that i am very adamant about.
We are a non gun owning home. Including no fake play guns.
I have been told by a handful of moms that "boys will be boys and turn anything into a gun", or the occasional "its just naturally in them to play with guns no matter how hard you try".
In all honesty, i rarely lend half an ear to these comments. I can tell you, i havent tried hard at all. It has actually taken very little effort. Forest doesnt have a clue. And in my opinion, a 2 and 1/2 year old doesnt need to.
I have tried to make it known that our kids dont play with toy guns. But i have always quietly feared the day that they receive one as a gift from some one who isnt aware. How would i react? What would i do? Well, it happened. However, it was quite humorous because the gift giver was some one i least expected! Christmas was at its best, and our boys were being showered with so many presents. Forest was very excited to open his gift from my best friend. My friend that i have known since i was 16. She knows me so well! Of all the people in the world, it had to be her! How could this have happened?! hahaha
He looked puzzled as he opened his brand new dart gun. Not as puzzled as i looked!
As he got more excited and decided it was a "tool", i sat in silence with my startled bird face look going on. Part of me dying and trying not to cry, the other part wanting to burst out laughing because of the irony. I have to admit, a dart gun is not quite the same as other toy guns. However, this one happened to be a pretty major one. She had bought my son a top quality dart gun. I decided to let him play with it. It took him quite a while to get the hang of it. He didnt naturally know what to do with it. But then after a few weeks, HE GOT IT. We never told him it was a gun. We never talked about shooting. It was just darts to him.
A major pet peeve of mine, is little boys pretending to shoot their friends. I started to notice a new behavior unfold in Forest. Something that he doesnt naturally have. Aggression. Every time he pulled out the dart gun, he became crazy aggressive. One day when our friends were over, i was just finishing explaining this to my fellow mom friend. We both turned to see Forest shouting at his friend (her son) and holding his dart gun to his head. I shouted "Thats enough! That thing is gone!". And the dart gun has now been put away matter how much fun i was secretly having with it.
I think little boys know how to pretend to shoot guns if they are told about them, shown how, have watched and been exposed. Forest didnt know how. Once he was handed a gun, he learned how. I hate guns. And i hate that its considered "cute" and "natural" for little boys to pretend shoot each other.

To my best friend: Please please dont hate me for writing about this! hahahaha

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