Thursday, March 26, 2009

Her First Taste of Regret

The Mayor and The Rooster were walking in the back door to our house after school today when suddenly The Mayor started screaming.

There are screams that you are ignore and then there are the ones that turn your blood cold and make you run.

I ran.

He held his hand up next to his injured ear without actually touching it. Tears streamed down his face and he wailed and wailed.

"What happened?" I asked him.
"She hit my ear with her whole head and it hurts."
The Rooster, irritated with her brother about something trivial like who got in the back door first, head-butted her brother in the ear with the stitches.

I sent her to her room and tended to The Mayor.

After a little ice, a lot of TLC and a distracting suggestion that we look in the closet to see if we owned any Junie B. Jones books, The Mayor calmed down.

Once he was calmed, I went in and had one of those stern talks with The Rooster.

She typically shrugs off time-outs and plays happily in her Area of Banishment.

I showed her The Mayor's stitches, gave her a pretty detailed description of his surgery and made sure she was clear that she was to never to touch his ear again.
"I'm sorry, Mayor," she said.
But The Mayor seemed pretty shaken up.

He's been really good about following directions related to taking care of his ear and so have his classmates.

At his pre-school, there is a job chart and the children take turns doing things like serving as Line Leader and Door Holder.

To help the class remember to watch out for The Mayor's ear, there's a new job on the chart called "Checker on The Mayor" and each day a different classmate takes a turn keeping an eye on his safety.

[I am indebted to his teacher, she is brilliant.]

After all the time and attention spent on protecting his ear, getting walloped by his sister really threw him.

I'm not sure if it really hurt as much as it scared him.

At any rate, he retreated to my office to read a book by himself.

After apologizing, The Rooster tried hard to get back in his good graces, but he really needed a few moments to himself.

She came to find me with her lip trembling.

Then her tears spilled over and she began to sob.
"What is it, Roo?" I asked.
"I... I... I feel sorry!" she sobbed. "I feel really sorry."
We sat together in her favorite rocking chair and, more softly this time, talked it over again.

It was my daughter's first taste of regret.
"The good thing about regrets," I told her, "is that they help you to remember not to make the same mistakes another time."
Still, it took a long time to rock The Rooster back down to this planet.

[And by this time I was an hour late starting dinner, K was still not home, my blood sugar had fallen (and could not get up) and The House of Joy had to forsake real nutrition and eat soup from a can because I can only do so much. So there.]


Mel said...

Oh, you poor mom. I read the first paragraph of this and my blood turned cold. (I may have also said some bad words, because oh my god.)
In this case, even canned soup is heroic. I'd still be sitting on the sofa with watery knees.

JCK said...

This story made me melt. What an amazing school that would add the job of watching over The Mayor. And I KNOW how important Line Leader is!

What melted me most was your little Roo's tears and feeling so sorry. You are teaching them well. Even if you need to sling back a whiskey to get through the evening. Sometimes a nice finish to a bowl of soup.

Julie said...

Oh my heart just broke again and again, and then again!!! What an emotional roller coaster that must have been to experience. You did good, Mama.

flutter said...

Oh, Roo. She does have a sweet heart in her

Michelle said...

Loving your kids - way more important that food.

Soup is good - I've been known to resort to toast!

Michelle said...

Oops! I meant 'than food'. :)

Twisted Cinderella said...

Poor Roo! (hugs to both of them and you too!

WILLIAM said...

I bet the Mayor lets her get to the door first from now on.

furiousBall said...

i hate this stuff. i'm undoing a lot of responding to frustration with physical retaliation.

Magpie said...

Oh man. That sucks.

But hey - the reason you had canned soup around was because sometimes stuff like this happens. We all need crutches.

Hope he's okay.

Mary G said...

An ultimate being SuperMom moment. You put your effort where it needed to be, for sure.
I also have a Roo -- so sorry afterwards. She grew up to be one of the most caring people I know, but the road to there was a rocky one.

Sugarplum's Mom said...

Oh, that just breaks my heart.. poor Mayor and Roo. It's such a lonely sinking feeling when you feel so sorry and someone just doesn't want to be around you for the moment. It's wonderful to see them love each other so much.

Mindy said...

I know exactly what those "running" screams sound like. They do make a mom's blood turn ice cold.

Sounds like you handled the situation perfectly.

And The Mayor's teacher sounds awesome. :)

Anonymous said...

1. There's a time for canned soup. 2. The teacher is brilliant. 3. Roo learned something that will last her whole life.

the new girl said...


It's an amazing thing to see them grow a conscience.

Amanda said...

Some of my fondest memories involve meals that went from container to mouth- bags, cans, tubes, whatevs..

Poor girls

Merrily Down the Stream said...

Poor little sweeties. soup is comfort food - especially tomato! xox

[PS yes we are still down here but I can't email out!]

carrie said...

Regret is a tough lesson to learn and it sounds like you did all you could to ease the discomfort of that lesson. :)

thatgirlblogs said...

ouch. nothing wrong with soup, btw. you are entitled...