123 Magic with a Twist.
As far as I can remember, I only ever got smacked once as a child.
I am 40 this year and I can still recall very clearly that afternoon, about 30 years ago.
I had been asking Dad for quite a while to buy me a Twister game and he had repeatedly said No.
I thought the lesson here to be learnt was for me to be inventive. To rely not on the money of my parents, but on my own creativity and ingenuity. To think outside the square. I REALLY wanted a Twister.
One afternoon, with a friend over to help and both my parents otherwise occupied, I trekked down to the bottom of the yard to my Dads shed. We found some Hessian in a cupboard and a plethora of (oil based) paints on a shelf. Red, Blue, Yellow and Green. FABULOUS! We took our treasures into the house and proceeded to make a DIY twister right in the middle of the Formal Lounge Room. Genius!
Now we weren’t stupid. Duh! We laid the Hessian out on the (plush cream, new but second hand) carpet and swirled large paint circles out, four of each colour all in straight lines. We were so pleased with ourselves.I was particularly pleased that I had listened to my father, and accepted the fact that money was tight and that I couldn’t just buy everything I wanted. Totally on board with that Dad.
So, we had finished. It was a sunny day and we thought our creation would dry better outside on the lawn. We lifted our masterpiece off the carpet and lo and behold, crap and fantastic, there was ANOTHER Twister underneath. On the Carpet.
Not that I used that word when I was ten. I didn’t even know about it until I was in my mid teens I don’t think, but I know it now. FUCK.
What I DO remember I knew was that really sick feeling you get when you know you have screwed the pooch so very badly that you think you may just throw up. Your skin goes all clammy and you can literally feel the blood drain from your face and pool in a puddle at your feet.
Anyhoo – long story short, my friend was sent home, we got new carpet and I got my first and last smackaroo from my Dad.
I really don’t remember any other form of discipline from my parents. I don’t recall time outs or things being confiscated. I was never grounded and I don’t remember ever deliberately disobeying them. I guess I was basically a good kid. Maybe a little cheeky, but essentially good. Yay for me and lucky them!
We have two boys and I often find myself wondering what I would do if we encountered the Twister situation on our lounge room floor. We have successfully done the 123 Magic programme with both our boys, G Man from three and Master J from 18 months. G Man will do as he is told pretty much first time round and if I ever have to count, I only get to ONE and he does what is being asked of him. Master J will often push me past TWO, teetering towards the THREE with a cheeky grin but we haven’t had to go there for nearly six months now so I dare say he gets it too. I cannot even imagine a scenario where we would lift a hand to our kids in such a calculated fashion, although I wont say it doesn’t exist! I just don’t think the Twister example quite fits it. I was horrified and mortified enough at myself and my actions, without the corporal punishment thrown in.
How do you discipline your kids?
What did you do that was smack worthy as a child??
What would you do if your kids made a virtual Twister on your cream lounge room carpet???