Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Motherhood - On the Job Training: Dis-Enchanted

I wanted to keep this post separate from my review of the movie "Enchanted"

When Annika and I went to buy our tickets, I gave the attendant 2 free movie passes we had. The attendant looked at Annika and asked, "How old is she? Is she four years old?"

I said, "Uh, yeah she is." She is a bit smaller than most American kids. The attendant looked 16 years old and would've believed me if I said she was 3.

"Ok, then." and he gave me one movie pass BACK and the two tickets for the show. How cool is that!

We went inside and I led Annika to the concession stand since I had promised her popcorn. We waited in line for half a second before she started.

"Mommy, why did you LIE to the man? You LIED and said I was 4. It's not good to LIE. Why did you LIE?"

I bent down and whispered, "I'll tell you later."

"But you're not supposed to LIE, but you did." She seemed to get louder.

I whispered a bit more fiercely, "Annika, keep quiet and I'll tell you later. You want the kid's size popcorn, right?" I changed the topic, and it worked.


All the cliches are true. Kids watch your every move and at this age, they'll call you on it. Also, I've always been quite (ridiculously) honest and used to question my parents all the time. My mom used to say, "We have Gandhi living in our house or what??"

So, it comes full circle, doesn't it?

I don't feel I compromised my morals or cheated the million dollar movie industry; in fact, I paid $5 for 1.5 cup of popcorn, 5 oz drink and a "fun size" bag of Skittles!

On Monday, I approached a colleague, who has raised 3 children, for advice. Her suggestion was that I need to redeem myself in Annika's eyes. So, the next time I receive an extra dime in change or something, I should make it a big production as I return it. She pointed out her 20-something son recently questioned her actions when she scolded him on the same point.

Newsflash -- it doesn't end.

I've worked so hard to be the one Annika relies on for straight forward answers. I'd like to help her guide her moral compass. At this age, kids need black and white answers. It's hard to discuss those areas of grey.

She also caught me complaining about a Christmas card (a preprinted business type card without personalization). I said, "That's it?" or something to that effect.

She said, "How can you say that? [This person] worked hard to send the card."

I told her, "You're right. I was just teasing."

"You were?"

"Yes, and if they were here, I would tease them and say the same thing!" Whew.. caught my balance back quickly then.

Anyway, I'm loving this little person in my life. I think I'm just the pitcher, but she's throwing curveballs right back at me!

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