Ok when I say what I am going to say, I have to tell you that I haven't exactly been around the world to run a survey to get the result. So pardon me if I am wrong.
Here is what I think: Gooly is the most ...is the most.... handsome? I wish!
Ok.. he is the most difficult..most strong-willed...most spirited child I have ever met. Granted, I have not seen many kids. So do accept my exaggeration.
What's the problem?
Ans: He doesn't take NO for an answer.
No, don't get me wrong. He is not rebellious. It's easy to get him to do things than to stop him from doing something. Let's just say he would hunt down Chimeara if you asked him to but don't think about stopping him from eating the cookie.
So most of time, when I say go clean up your room, he would.
But if I said, "No, you can't have the cookie" the most common and challenging reply would be, "WHY?"
And then he will make an appeal, "Ma'am, can I have just a bite?" - the same you would if you got caught speeding, "Incik, boleh settle ka?"
The appeal can be in various forms. Sometimes it is "I won't spoil my appetite."
Trust me, he can come up with 101 appeals. Each at the brink of tears. A single NO can drag to many minutes of battle. Mahmee vs. Gooly style.
Some kids are more taciturn. They are ok and comfortable to have boundaries.
But not Gooly. He is spirited. He challenges the boundaries, and sometimes authorities. He is persistent at that too.
So what do I do? Break his spirit? Let him not question why? Let him not have guts to speak his mind? Let him not have the brain to question authority?
How long can we do that? Until he can buy his own cigarettes even when we say NO?
This characteristic of him (questioning WHY before accepting the condition) is admirable if he was an adult. But it drives us nuts now because he is just a kid!
Imagine this scene from yesterday:
Papah: Put on seatbelt.
Gooly: Wait. I put on my socks first.
Papah: No! Seatbelt.
Gooly: No. Don't force me.
I had to intervene.. "You need to put on the seat belt because the car is already moving. And there might be policemen at the corner." He obliged.
He has a mind of his own. Deciding what to do and when to do it. He can be persuaded if and only if you give him a freaking good reason.
For now, we have to play our cards well. We are still holding the rein, but loosely. I know, he will resist more with each thug and pull enforced. But at the same time, we want him to respect a simple NO.
I am sorry but the answer is still NO.
You are angry at me now, I know. But please come and hug me when you cool down.
Otherwise, I have to give him options: Two cookies if you have them AFTER dinner.
Gawd..it is tiring parenting a mini man.
But when he is asleep and thus not asking WHY anymore, I think to myself, "Say, I don't want him to grow up to be a mummy's boy. I don't want him to say yes to his boss, mom, dad, gf, wife etc. just because they say so, do I?" So, just bear it and grin?
Today, I told him about house rules which I carefully explained the reasons for them. He accepted them. And then made a few of his own for me to follow.
Ah well, its Christmas. Lemme wish you guys a Marry Kismisss!
WHY? Did I hear you ask why??????
*flex muscle* Don't let me hear another WHY, can or not????