Sometimes we take for granted that some life lessons are blatantly obvious to our offspring, and they don't require explicit teaching. We assume some things concerning safety and hygiene come naturally, and for many children they do. But, there are those kids who simply just don't get it and not only do we have to teach them these lessons, but we have to teach them over and over!
1. Don't stand on things with wheels.
I find that the less balance a child has, the more inclined they are to do this. It is quite mind-boggling, really. This was my very first official house rule and one that is still often repeated. My oldest child
obsessively stood on his ride-on fire truck which eventually rolled out from under him splatting his head on the floor. Little did I know at the time, that child does not give a rat’s behind about house rules!
2. Don't eat where you poo.
Every mom occasionally has to remind her kids to wash their hands after using the bathroom, but some kids don’t seem to understand that if you lay your cheese stick down on the counter to do it, the purpose is pretty well defied. My third daughter once explained to me that it is just fine to eat a granola bar on the toilet because it only requires one hand and she can use the other hand to wipe. I suppose she is technically correct, but just ewww!
3. Don't wrap things around your neck.
There are some kids who possess a natural compulsion to wrap belts, cords, shoe laces, strings, basically anything more than ten inches in length, around their necks. Once again, my oldest was one of them. Our scariest incident involved one of those long, stretchy sticky-hand things. He turned colors before I finally jammed my finger between it and his neck to rip it off.
4. Don't jump from high places.
You know that funny feeling you get in your tummy at the top of the high dive? Apparently some kids do not have that feeling! I imagine my sixth child’s internal dialogue goes something like this, “Well yesterday I jumped off that stool, and I’m still alive, how ‘bout we try the counter today!”
5.Don’t jump into water of an unknown depth.
The kids who whine the most about getting water on their faces at bathtime are the first ones to jump into a swimming pool without considering that they might, just maybe, get water on their faces. The first time I took my oldest son to a hotel swimming pool, he ran and jumped into the ten-foot end. I could deal with that now, but at the time I had only been a mom for two years and freaked out. Luckily, my hubby sprung into action more quickly!
6. Don't run off with reckless abandon.
Some kids just see absolutely no difference between a big grassy area in the park and the parking lot at the grocery store. Both are fair game for expending some energy after being cooped up in the car. So far, I have had two runners, three stayers, and one eenie-meenie-miney-moe which one will it be today-er.When my oldest was two, he made a very sudden move to get away and sprinted off in Sears. He made a huge lap around the whole store, ran right back to where my husband was standing talking to a clerk, and laughed hysterically. I was near tears for my fear of him being kidnapped, and that was back when I still cared about the disapproving stares of little old ladies, so I felt completely embarrassed as well.
7. Don't lick poo.
Finally, here is one lesson that I only taught one time! Thank goodness! You would think the smell of poo alone would repulse all children enough to keep them from doing such a thing, but you would be wrong. Maybe my son had a super stuffy nose. Maybe he thought it looked like some delicious, stinky chocolate. Anyway, above is a picture I took a few minutes before the poo licking event. You see that pitchfork-like thing he is holding? It is a pooper scooper for cleaning cow patties out of barns. Well, he was proudly carting off a real fresh one when he suddenly stopped and in one swift motion, swiped his hand right through it and directly into his mouth. Brings a whole new meaning to getting your mouth washed out with soap, now doesn’t it?
Now before any of you claim that if kids were disciplined properly, they would not do these sorts of
things, please be advised that you are wrong. You have just not been blessed with the humility that these children provide for their mothers.
I am the mother of seven children ranging from teens to a toddler, living out in the middle of nowhere, USA. I aim to hone the craft of giving advice without pretending to have this whole mom thing figured out. I am Christian, but not the really nice kind that is good at it. I am also conservative, but I promise not to be in your face with political agendas very often. I like to infuse humor into my writing, so don't freak out if you are offended or appalled by what you read here. There is a very fine line between serious advice and sarcastic hyperbole.
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