27 February 2008

So Mom IS right sometimes, then?

Today didn't get off to such a great start for my son Damien. See, yesterday was an unexpected snow day (our area of Ohio got hit with a whole bunch of snow during the night--over 350 schools within ours and the neighboring counties were closed). So, naturally, Damien's hopes were high that today would be another snow day as well--especially since there was still a good deal of snow on the ground. No such luck.

He watched the morning news school closing lists scrolling at the bottom of the television screen hopefully, and then burst into tears when I confirmed that yes, his school was open today. I tried telling him to settle down...he responded by saying that he was just having a bad day.

That is typical Damien--master of drama. One little thing goes some way he doesn't like, and he's ready to throw in the towel for the entire day. Knowing how he is, though, I tried to ignore it and just encourage him to get ready for school.

As he was getting dressed, though, he was complaining because he wanted to go sledding; after all, that is what he had gotten to do yesterday for the snow day and he had been wanting to go again. The weather this winter in Ohio has been really strange...we've had a lot of cold, windy weather--but not much snow, at least not the kind that sticks to the ground, good for sledding. So, yesterday was the first chance the kids had gotten to go sledding. And this morning, Damien was wanting to go again.

So, he asked me if he could go after school--if we could wait until later to do homework today (usually we do homework immediately after school). But I reminded him that he had an after-school class today, a "Mad Science" class (which would therefore mean that he wouldn't get home early enough to do homework and go outside). This brought about another round of tears. This puzzled me--I had thought he enjoyed the class the first time he had taken it...and he had only been to one class.

Damien explained--"Mad Science" was boring, he said. It was always boring! They never did anything exciting there, never did any good science experiments like they said they would!

This was news to me. The boy had only been to one class, like I said--and when he came home from that one class, he seemed happy enough about it.

So I began to talk like any parent would, saying things like, "How can you say it is always boring if you have only been to one class?" and "The first class was probably pretty basic because they had to find out who everyone was and do paperwork; I bet it will be a lot better." You know--standard parent talk. It didn't work at all.

I had to break out the big guns. I told him he had a choice--go to all three days of after-school classes (which include one day of "City Recreation" and one day of "Martial Arts"), or go to none of the classes. I explained the it was an all-or-nothing deal (this is true, too--I wasn't making this up...the school expects the kids in the program to attend the after-school program for all three days it is offered if they signed up, I think because the school gets state funding for the program).

This certainly didn't make him any happier. I didn't care. At this point, I was pretty darn grumpy myself! Damien finally decided to go to the "Mad Science" class.

Now here's the thing--when he came in the door this afternoon after the class, Damien was in a really great mood. I asked him how school was, and he said it was fine. So then I asked how the "Mad Science" class was. He said it was fun! Yes--that's right--he said it was fun! I made him repeat it about three times. I kept asking him, "Are you sure? 'Mad Science' was fun? You mean it wasn't boring?" I said, "Are you saying that they actually did an exciting experiment in 'Mad Science' today?"

The entire time we worked on his homework, I threw in comments about how interesting it was that the "Mad Science" class ended up being so much fun today. It was one of those things where I was kind of talking to myself, but Damien and I both knew that I was really talking to him.

I think he got tired of me talking about it, but I wanted to make my point--Mom is right sometimes, isn't she? I made Damien admit that, too. Yeah, I know, maybe that was a little bit over the top, but if you had to deal with the drama king this morning, you would have wanted your moment of parental glory, too...


Alberto said...

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Dette said...

OMG - what a trip. My Jacob is the SAME way! I laughed out loud when you said "Master of Drama" - mine is full of spirit (for better or worse!)