THAT TIME I CAVED...

My kids and I went shopping the other day. My six-year-old son, Miles, spotted and tried on a pair of sunglasses. He’s not typically into cruising stores unless it’s the toy department. So, the fact that on his own he saw, modeled and BEGGED me to buy these glasses really said something! They cost more than I would ordinarily want to spend on something he could so easily lose. But, he was truly feelin’ himself as he proceeded to strut around for the rest of the day (indoors and out!) wearing his super cool new shades. Yeah, I caved. Between that and his dimples, it melted this mama’s heart.

He continued to wear them pretty much constantly for the next few days. Then, it was time for soccer practice. He wore them in the car on the way. It was a really bright afternoon, so he asked if he could wear them on the field. My husband told him no – that it wasn’t allowed. I saw no harm in it – I mean, he’s six. It’s not MLS. Surely it would fly.

Not so much. His coach asked for the glasses and put them on the grass near his water bottle. Practice ended. We left. About an hour later, he realized that he didn’t have them. I texted the coach who was still at the field. No sign of the glasses anywhere. They were gone.

My husband went into a long speech about responsibility and how he should keep better track of his things. He wasn’t wrong. But, our son sobbed. Like, real, heartfelt, super sad tears. He loved those silly glasses and his little heart was just broken because they were gone and he truly recognized that it was his fault. On some level it was… but I also felt like as the mom, I should’ve double checked to make sure he had all of his things before we left. My husband couldn’t have disagreed more. He felt it was a good lesson learned the hard way.

I started making dinner as my son sat on the couch with his head down, still sniffling. I don’t know if it was hormones, the fact that I’m an empath by nature, or those darn dimples! But, I burst into tears! Over sunglasses? Really?? Yes. Really.

My husband (who had been standing his ground as he went on and on about what this will teach our youngest child) looked at me and told me to hurry up and get to the store where we got the shades and see if they had another pair. He knew that’s what I was dying to do. And that’s just what I did.

They had one pair left! I grabbed them and headed back to the house. As I handed Miles the glasses he hugged me so tightly and thanked me. In spite of everything, I really do think he learned a valuable lesson. I just happened to sweeten the end of the story by replacing what was lost.

As much as I probably should’ve stayed ‘tough’ and let him suffer the consequences of his actions (and many times, I do), there are times when I step back and remind myself that he is still such a little boy. A baby, really. He has a lot of life in front of him. He’ll experience the hardness of the world in due time. Sometimes I just want to make things better and go against that better judgement. This was either a great move, a horrible move or I’m just a total sucker. Keep you posted! HA!

Parenting should come with a manual.

Jennifer Waldman