During the recent days when school was out due to the widespread illness, my grandsons stayed with us on a Thursday and Friday
As you may recall, it was very cold outside, but they insisted on being outside on both days. They rode their bicycles and had a great time, but they did get cold and came in. They watched Netflix, “Cars” and “Mighty Machines” being the favorites. Mine is the “Machines”! They had popcorn and then a “picnic” in front of the fire. They pulled out all their cars and then the Legos and played so well together that we were totally awed by our mastery of childcare.
On Friday morning I got up at about 7 and went in to make coffee, and there they were, in my chair, covered up with a blanket watching “Mighty Machines”, volume turned down very low. They were wearing their hoodie sweats that has a “bear face” on the hood. They love my chair!
Before they went home, Miles, the four year-old said, “Granddaddy, I want to stay here all the time. I want to visit mommy and daddy, but I want to stay here.”
In a nano second I felt so great! YES! In my euphoria of being so awesome, I thought, “They love it here.” Then reason slapped me in my face. Why wouldn’t they love it here? They largely eat what they want, they largely do want they want, and they largely have wide boundaries. What’s not to like? They even get to set the parameters as to when to visit mommy and daddy!
Thinking what the consequences of that would be, long-term, are troubling. Little discipline produces big monsters! My daughter reminds us, often, that we never let THEM get away with that.
But aren’t we, too, sometimes that way? We go for the good news, the attractive outcome, the “most appealing”, and we bypass discipline. In food, that has real consequences. The old “laugh” at our house was, “How much do I have to eat to get dessert?”
We can be lulled into the excitement of a good time and forget that good times don’t last forever.
The blissful honeymoon ends and reality reenters. It isn’t necessarily something bad, but it is a reality.
We have to go back to our daily routine. We will have sickness, but we usually recover as a matter of course.