A few weeks ago, Mr. Pants suddenly became sad. The look on his face punched my heart. His lip quivered, man. That lip quiver is just... dude. When we asked him what happened, said to us, "Hey MamaDaddy!" With tears of sadness and a big sigh, he continued, "Joe* called me a steemper beek today. He say, 'you a steemper beek!'"
Daddy and I looked at each other as if to say, "Did you catch that?", but neither of us could decipher the actual words that Pants was relaying. He went on to let us know that this was all "very so bad".
Calm on the outside and raging ball of fury on the inside, we talked with him about calling people names and how he felt when Joe was mean to him. It was a talk we've had before but this was the first time I had no ability to discipline the offender. My insides wanted to find out who this little punk was and where he lived so that I could go have a stern talking to with him and his parents and maybe call them all Steemper Beeks or something.
Whatever that actually means.
Upon further investigation, his teacher confirmed to us that a child had, in fact, issued some pretty profane insults to the class that day, including some rather unsavory words for the teachers. She assured us that they were working on this problem with this child and his parents. She promised that I would be informed of any future issues as best that she could while considering this child's confidentiality rights.
Parts of me (the peaceful /UU side) were very satisfied. Other parts were still having trouble and leaking out lava.
NO ONE CALLS MY SWEET ANGEL A STEEMPER BEEK!!! NO ONE! HE IS A PRECIOUS ANGEL! PRECIOUS!!!
Sometimes I forget to breathe. That's not new. Ommmmmmmmmmm.
So in short, NO, no matter how much your inner mama bear wishes it so, NO, no you cannot go undercover in the night and toilet paper a four year-old's yard. You cannot fork the yard either. Also on the "No-No" list? Prank calling the offender and ordering twenty pizzas to their house. You also should never consider hanging out during parent-teacher conferences to "have a talk" with the kid's parents.
Alas, all you can do is talk to your child about how calling someone a mean name is an unkind thing to do. And of course, with all good lessons, that starts with you. So throw a blanket of love over your kid and you. Put on some Yanni, or whatever soothes you, and move forward with your day.
Then you have to take a minute to realize that this isn't the last time your child will be wronged. Remember, too, that your child will eventually wrong someone. Breathe in and then out. Then think about your plan for those times while you put away the plastic forks and toilet paper.
I might just be talking to myself here.
might be something awesome, something awful or a lesson that I learned during the week. Every Sunday I put that lesson here. Let my wisdom words inspire or frighten you. xoxox, Mama Pants}