Tag Archives: kids

My Kids Dont Want to Stay with Me

I came home from work one night and sat down to dinner with the family.  Usual chaos, flying food, giggles, and squeals.

My wife promptly informed me that she would like to run to the store and do some shopping before the stores close.  I have no problem with this, I have the troops on a regimented bedtime routine and should be able to clean the monsters up and march them straight to bed with maybe a little prebedtime rasslin match.  No problem.

So she stands, rapidly grabs her purse and bolts for the door.  At which point my 7yr old proclaims, “your leaving us with HIM??!! Really?!”

I wasn’t sure how to take this.

The more I thought about it, the more it was clear.  It is a typical good cop, bad cop scenario in our house.  Most nights, I start calling for them to get ready for bed and they typically scurry in the general direction of mom.  I say general, because kids have no concept of straight lines unless cookies are involved.  Mom, of course cuddles and coos with them, the kids stall, I push further to start getting ready for bed and they scatter again.  However, I tend to find them again  back at mom.  Mom, of course tells them to get ready for bed, but somehow lacks the real “umph” of commitment and she cant resist the many child stall tactics of, “im thirsty”, “read us another story”, “can we cuddle”, and “I gotta cocka!”

I on the other hand tend to be the enforcer, ultimately I drag them to bed against repeated objections giving them the, “life’s not fair” speech.

It was clear, without momma around the kids would have much fewer viable stall tactics.

Maybe, I’m a little to harsh.  So I decided to use this opportunity to “soften” my image.

I gave into several of their stall tactics and even spent extra time doing one of their favorite nighttime activities, rasslin.  I sang them a song and then put them to bed.  It was a good night and we were all feeling close and loving.

As I turned out the light, the same 7yr old who had exclaimed worry about being left with me, quietly asked, “daddy, when is mommy coming home?  I want to cuddle.”

“Son, I can cuddle with you.”

“But Daddy your hard and spiky.”  He then laughed and said he was kidding…. but deep down, I don’t think he was.

No matter how “soft” i ever try to be.  I will never be mommy.

Thank goodness I don’t have to be.

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Mommy, You Said That Five “Soons” Ago! How Many More “Soons?”

My 4yr olds response when Mommy answered his “When are we leaving” question for the tenth time.

Now, he just cuts straight to the chase and asks, “How many Soons until we leave?”

The anticipations and sense of time of a child is an amazing thing.  My dad once taught me that children were the best negotiators.  They have what it takes.  Will and TIME.  These fluttering minds bouncing from thought to thought and subject to subject often seem chaotic and with no attention span, but don’t be fooled.  Once locked in, the child’s mind has deadly laser focus and devastating power of deployment.  Once they set their mind to the negotiation, they have nothing but time on their side and constant will.  You can say “no” ten thousand times yet a child only sees an opportunity to restate or re-purpose their request once again.

Here is where parent’s steely resolve is tested.  Remember, if you say no 10,000 times and cave to the child’s request on the 10,001st time.  You have only taught them that they have to ask 10,001 times, and that certainly is no problem for them.

Ultimately we parents will lose to these negotiation masters, but hopefully will hold fast when it comes to the critical battles that teach our children character and truth about our world.  Allowing them enough success for good self esteem without allowing them to run a foul without any sense of boundary or rule.

I personally want my children to push boundaries and bend the rules, but they have to firmly know the boundaries and rules as well as the consequences before this can be successfully done.

Now… I have to stop this post.  The 7yr old has asked to use the computer 20 times since I started typing and I cant hold out any further.


The Adoption Talk I Wasn’t Prepared to Have

I recently was working in the yard when my 4 year old son came to my side and declared, “My real dad was awesome.”  This of course perked my ears up.  “real dad?”  “Yeah, my real dad, you know the one before you were my dad?”  I said, “son, what are you talking about?”  He chirped up, “you know, my dad before I was adopted.”

My son then proceeded to edify his case and tell me in great detail about his life “before” he lived with me and how great his “real” mom and dad was.

As an adoptive father, I knew this conversation was coming.  My wife and I have been preparing for it ever since that fateful day we first held our two beautiful adopted boys in our arms.  As matter of fact, we have never hid our boys adoption and have always tried to talk to our boys openly about it.  Maybe that was the problem.  You see, Our adopted boys are now 9 and 7 years old.  Their four year old brother standing before me now is actually my own flesh in blood.  Looks so much like me that he once looked at an old picture of me with Santa Claus and declared that it was him.  Honestly… it vary well could have been him as he is my little clone.

I must admit, it hurt more than I expected.  I was initially stung by the words when he declared that I was not his “real dad.”  He said it so matter of factually and with a gleefulness and excitement.  How could this little man be so happy and proud to pronounce that I’m not his “real dad,”  And where in the world did he hear this anyway?

Of course I know where.  He adores his older brothers and wants to be like them in so many ways.

I have always expected and been prepared to “defend” my rightful place as “dad” with my older boys.   I stand confident in my roll as “heavy object mover”, “rasslin king” , and “professional hook baiter.”  I even occasionally turn into the terrible “Zombie Dad” from time to time that is always good for squeals of delight.  I constantly work extra hard to be at my kids school events and even volunteered to lead their Cub scouts group, and when they have an injury, I am there to wash it, tell them to suck it up and walk it off.  

I am DAD.

come to think of it…. It doesn’t really matter which of my kids want to challenge my status.  What makes me their father is the same.

I love my children.  I will always be there for them.  They can never do anything that would prevent that.

I am their DAD.

so if my biological son wants to fantasize about being adopted.  Who cares.  I know where he will always end up when he has a scrapped knee.

Probably running to his mother….

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Let’s Talk About Your “Rights”…

Nothing gets me more in a tizzy than to hear politician say, “it’s your right” or “you deserve. ”

We have so many problems and issues in our country.  Problems that are not new or somehow unique to our country or even our particular generation.  What is unique however is our social dialogue.  No time in the history of man have we been more connected and more free to speak our mind.  A freedom that I fear is wasted by most and is incessantly driven by a mindless and commercially driven media.  In a world that is FULL of EASILY AVAILABLE information, yet we are still horribly ignorant and still allow a few loud and verbose among us to tell us what to think.

Well, I would like a chance to move thought a little.

“Rights” is where I think we have to start.  Our society has spiraled into relative chaos due to this simple but contentious concept.  Rights, as described by our forefathers, started simply.  Life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.  They knew that true Rights are rare, small but highly treasured things.  The basic belief that humans control their own destiny and must be allowed the opportunity to pursue that destiny.  Without outside interference whenever possible.  Those simple Rights are the cornerstone of our great nation and must be protected.  Problem is,  recently we decided to expand those “rights.”

Creating one after another (through social dialogue) rights that we “deserve” and are “owed” by society.  This was with the noblest of intentions but has led to a degenerate society.  One question epitomizes the issue, “What happens when your Rights, conflict with my Rights?”

The definition of Right should never allow this to happen because a Right should be self determined.  If a Right is infringing on another person, then it is no longer a Right, it’s a privilege.

I will offer this definition to simplify Rights: anything you can have or do that does not require another living soul to have or accomplish.

If it requires another person, for any reason, then it can not be considered a Right.  It has required that living soul to give (even the smallest amount) then it is a gift, therefore a privilege.

If you are honest with yourself, you will see that it is almost impossible to claim many of our so called Rights, as true Rights.  The late great George Carlin said it best, “There are no such things as Rights, just temporary privileges.”  He also said,” it’s only a Right until it is inconvenient for the government.”  So True.

So if I could have one dream.  One wish, it would be that we would change our national dialogue of “our Rights” and what we “deserve.”  Instead, could we please talk about what privileges we as a nation want?

Talk of Rights is full of selfishness.  As the most powerful, wealthy , and advanced country in the world…. What privileges would we want for each other?  We want good roads, police, and fire fighters (as someone who has traveled to the 3rd world, these are defiantly privileges) so we are willing to pay for it.  We want social welfare and medical care for our elderly, and so, we REALLY pay for it.  We have decided we want the biggest, baddest army in the world, and boy do we ever pay for it.  We even once wanted to be the first nation to the moon, we payed for it and then celebrated and shared in the privilege that showed our strength and determination to the world.

Accept it folks.  We have very few Rights.  Almost none.  But, we have more opportunity than almost anyone else in the entire world…. please let us not squander it.

We must look long and hard at ourselves and decide what privileges we want and what we are willing to pay for.  The pot of gold is not infinite but it is huge and if managed well, could give us (and does give us) privileges beyond our wildest dreams.

We must earn privileges. We must all contribute and work to make our country great so that we can enjoy even more privileges.  The Rights you think you deserve, just don’t exist.

The world and society owes us nothing but the opportunity to succeed, it is up to us to take this privilege and be thankful for it.


Why My Son Doesn’t Want to Sleep in His Bed.

I have 5 children.  My wife and I have seen a little of everything when it comes to raising kids, but everyday they still surprise me.  That’s the fun of kids, right?  right?  Kids are supposed to be fun, right?

I’m kidding…. a little. 🙂

Kids are amazing.  Amazingly hard, amazingly exhausting, and amazingly awesome.  Even if I do threaten to eat them on a daily basis.

Our latest battle (one of several, as the war to raise children has many fronts) is our four your old son.  Nightly, he comes to our bedroom and crawls into our bed.  We have been terribly inconsistent.  Which is the worst thing to do but, we are to tired to fight it most nights.  Some nights we take him back to is bed and others we just let him stay.  The problem really is that he is a kicker.  Squirming, nesting, kicker.  He likes to take his feet and bury them and kick them (usually under me.)  I think he probably has restless leg syndrome.  It doesn’t seem to bother him one bit, but me… no chance of sleeping.

On one particular morning, we had enough.  My wife and I decided we would do the grown up thing and “reason” with our four year old.  We are highly educated people, we can do that, right?

Had it all figured out.  I certainly could out debate and circle a four your old.  I would dismantle each of his excuses and reasons for coming to our bed and he would have NO CHOICE but to understand and stay in his own bed.

Scared of the dark? check, we would leave a night light on.

I’m thirsty? check, leave a small glass of water at his bedside.

Want to sleep with someone? check, he ha his teddy that he has always slept with just fine.

 

so, sat my son down.  Looked him straight in the eye and was ready to go.

“Son, why do you keep coming to our bed every night?”

He looked at me, calm, without an ounce of fear.  “There’s no mommy in my bed.

In a single phrase, I was stunned and horribly defeated with absolutely no response.

I stood up, looked at my wife who was looking for me to say something. “Well, I cant argue with that.”

So all three of us are sleeping together.  I really hope he out grows this…..