Last night my kids got into a big argument over something or another. Instead of using their usual eloquent vocabularies to arm themselves with viscous words and nasty quips, they actually hit each other instead…..I have to say, I was a bit proud.
You see, typically when my girls (or ANY girl) argue, they say something mean, shed some (OK, ALOT of) tears and go on and on and on…. and on…over the pain of it all….the theatrics never seem to cease in my house and i usually react with a stone cold face and let them know I have no patience for tears and to leave the performing arts for after school clubs… basically to just get over it already……there’s a history here:
When I was a kid growing up in a household of 3 brothers and 3 male first cousins who practically lived in our toilet seat up family….we had no time or energy for tears. My parents didn’t understand the language of drama….they didn’t have to because small quarrels were settled with wedgies, nipple twisters and tickle tortures until one of us peed on the floor and the punishment would be the instigator had to clean it up.
(Bad part about that was you couldn’t prove who started it so my siblings always got away with that gross mess and the VIRGO in me always had to clean it up..must have been the commencement – or the cause?- of my OCD…Alas, as always- THAT dysfunction will be saved for my Tell All book – out soon!).
Our REAL feuds were ALWAYS settled like the original Batman series of the late 60’s and early 70‘s with us acting out like the caped crusaders with our trusty bat-utility belts letting out a few “POW”s! “KA-BOOM”s! and some “BAM”’s!!…the punches would roll, we’d settle for a frozen can of orange juice concentrate as an ice pack and if we were lucky, a bandaid – and then dinner was ready. Spaghetti. Always spaghetti.
No residuals . No leftover sore feelings. Done. Altercation settled.
So when my girls actually HIT each other last night I thought I would have the instant relief of my own experience fighting with the boys…but alas, the throbbing jaws and pain of the pinches left my drama queens with even more exaggerated melodramatic ammunition to last a lifetime.
So there I stood, a proud mama of GIRLS and female EMOTION, wondering how to turn this into a lesson???…. so I asked the TOM BOY in me- what to do?
Then it hit me (figuratively that is) that I need to take this opportunity to shed some light on my very coddled and sheltered children and teach them a very important life lesson…..thus began the lecture on how -the REAL world- (not the cushioned reality they are fortunate enough to live in) but THE world is a rather tough enough place…..SOME people may not have your best interests at heart and who else will protect you, nurture you, look out for you, support you- if not for your sister? Your family?
THen came the reaction that warms my heart each and every time…GIRLS -unlike the boys I grew up with- ALSO love to hug, kiss, cuddle and EMOTE! All was peaceful in the house once again (until another new day?)
I think we can all learn from this experience and take a quick assessment of our own family dynamics….we all have them-
be it blood relative or second cousin by marriage…there’s always someone that causes us tension or duress.
Maybe now more than any other time of the year – the HOLIDAY season, if we are fortunate or UNfortunate enough to spend it with our families and sometimes that really annoying Aunt that always seems to show up uninvited ….when we can be a little more open minded, a little more forgiving, and a little more understanding that there are typically 3 sides to every story ……if only until the New Year.
(play background music “its a wonderful life or click here:
Happy Holidays folks!