If you live in a Tornado Prone area, you know the lingo. You know that if the local weather people – to the best of their abilities – have predicted possible “Severe Weather” then you have to stay “Weather Aware” all day. You keep the radio on, or your Twitter feed pulled up, you listen to the newscasts of the counties getting hit by the storms releasing kids from school early and you rearrange your day so you can be prepared for a pickup.
That’s a new thing, by the way. Letting the kids out under the threat of severe weather. We’ve had some bad storms and had a school get hit in the last few years and this is what happens now. Even though they practice tornado drills in school, they don’t have to use them as much anymore because they just send the kids home.
So, yesterday I was on edge like everyone else in town. We had a few blips of No Power which is weird since we have underground utilities. However, when we lost power for a week 2 years ago it was because storms took out a hub outside of Huntsville, so I have flashbacks to living in the dark for 5 days every time the lights go out. We also had blips without internet, which could possibly have nothing to do with the storms. But still…TENSION!
(Just creating the mood for my last night parenting adventure.)
Wes used to have a severe hitting problem. I blamed it on a tendency for over-enthusiastic rough-housing with his sister. She could beat him in any game so he would just fight back physically which she would encourage because – well – she was was bigger and could beat him at that too. I put a moratorium on rough-housing. I don’t feel like either one of them really understands how to rough-house without hurting each other, but hitting was turning into his Go To Move for any excitement/fun.
He has gotten much better. BUT! He’s not perfect. We still deal with “accidental” outbursts where the Go To instinct takes over momentarily when they’re goofing off. And then sometimes? He just hits. Intentionally hits. And I’ve done just about everything on the range of punishments. Last night, he punched repeatedly and intentionally and I took everything out of his room that he couldn’t wear.
That is the pile of stuff. And now I have no idea what to do with it. I took it out with the threat of sending it all to Goodwill. Of course, there’s a lot of sentimental stuff in there I wouldn’t want to get rid of. And books! I don’t want to get rid of books. And a lot of that pile are gifts from family. Is that really rude to give away gifts people give your kids as a means of punishment? And do I really want to do that anyway? Give away all his toys? He’s made tons of progress.
I think I’m going to let him “earn” his things back. Maybe one day at a time of no hitting. I hate the threat of a “bad day” hovering over every minute. Like, one bad move and BAM! no toy. I hate those kind of days. Sometimes they’re effective, but I still hate them.
SO. How do I see this through? I didn’t really say anything last night while I was taking the stuff away other than, “I’m taking all of your things away.” He assumes I’m taking it all to Goodwill, and there was appropriate levels of crying, so I just let him continue with that thought. I know a lot of us have commiserated about this type of extreme move, so I’d love to hear your insights. If you did the TAKE IT ALL road, what did you do with it? If you haven’t done it, how would you do it should it come to that?