The twins have entered into a stage where our techniques are a bit less effective. They are exerting more independence and daring to disobey us or cop an attitude more-so than in times past. The two biggest hot buttons for me is disrespect and bad attitude. I don't much care if they forget to do chores or leave toys downstairs, or plead to stay up past bedtime. These things do require us to get involved but there is no risk of me getting hot under the collar. But tell me "no" right after I instruct you to do something and the blood pressure begins to rise. Do exactly what I just told you to stop doing, right after I told you to stop doing it and my temple starts to bulge. Speak to me or mom with a sassy tone and Houston we have problems.
Normally even in those cases, I keep myself under decent control but punishments are handed out. But this morning I blew it. The twins were arguing about what field trips they were taking this year. I asked them to stop and told my son that he was being rude with his tone toward his sister and told my daughter that I was pretty sure her brother was right. But either way...stop arguing and lets move on. Then my daughter jabs one more time and claims to her brother that she knows she is right. Michael immediately responds with aggravated protest and they are right back at it.
Yes, I yelled pretty near what I believe to be the top of my lungs. And it was effective. They stopped arguing immediately but the tears began streaming. EPIC FAIL. What a louse and a wretch I am. I may have been justified in my frustration and in correcting their behavior. But I am not justified by the method. Any possibly leg I had to stand on in correcting them was hypocritically destroyed by my own hand. So I pulled over into a parking lot, calmly talked with them, apologized for my behavior, and gave them hugs. I am not sure I even came close to making it up to them. All I really proved is that I am a bigger 7 year old. That I need just as much correction and grace as they do...if not a bit more.