Two truths and a lie, and structure


I was introduced to the game “two truths and a lie” not too long ago, and it goes like this: you sit with a group of people; preferably strangers or people that you don’t know very well, and you tell them two pieces of information about yourself that is 100% true, and one piece of information that is a lie. The group in return has to figure out which one of your facts is a lie. It can be a lot of fun if played openly and honestly, or just blow up in your face if you’re a pathological liar. Either way, it’s a great get-to-know-you game. So, I’ve decided to play with all of you. I’ll reveal at the end of this post which fact about me is a lie. Here we go.

1. I am terrified of the movie E.T. (Yes I know. I’m 37 and still afraid of a cute, little, extra terrestrial.)
2. I worked at Old Sturbridge Village (a tourist trap) off an on for four years. Hey, at least I can milk a cow, cook over a hearth, and quilt. What can you do?
3. I played girls hockey in high school.

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Okay, now let’s change the subject. By a show of hands, how many of you fabulous and busy parents out there, keep your kids days as structured as humanly possible?

Hummmm. Interesting. And how many of you fabulous and busy parents out there, have your kids in activities after school and/or on the weekends? Please raise your hands.

And how many of you fabulous and busy parents out there, come home from work after a really long, hard, and tiring day, and just want to sit down for a few minutes without feeling guilty that you’re not doing enough structured activities with your child? Please raise your hands.

Oh good, so I’m not alone out here. I was recently at an appointment with my son’s doctor, and she asked me how structured I keep my sons days. I explained to her that he goes to gymnastics on Saturdays and on the weekends we’re actually quite busy. It’s a rarity that we have days where we do absolutely nothing, but even so, in my book, it’s okay to have days where you do absolutely nothing, you know?

What she was getting at was, that when my son gets home from school every day, she wanted to know how he passes his time. So I told her that he loves to play with his toys, play with the iPad, watch DVDs or TV, and occasionally will sit and read a book with me. I guess his doctor still wasn’t satisfied with my answer. She proceeded to ask me if I ever made him the picture schedule to let him know what’s coming next in terms of structured activities? So I told her “no, I don’t use a picture schedule with him, because he’s not at school… he’s at home.” I actually felt offended by her question. I mean, what more can I do for my son when he gets home at quarter of four in the afternoon? I am just getting home as well, there are things that I need to do too, especially to unwind.

When Willy gets home from school, he is perfectly happy getting a juice box and a snack, and decompressing the way that makes him feel best. And I don’t see a problem with that… Or should I? I mean, we all need downtime don’t we? Yeah, I thought so.

So why was this woman making me feel so bad? If Willy was the kind of kid that loved doing arts and crafts, puzzles, practicing his violin, and helping me out around the house, that’s one thing. But right now, his interests have shifted. My husband claims that we need to live our lives as well, and that we are excellent parents who knows their son better than most. So then why do I still feel bad? I plan on my son starting swim lessons this winter, and still doing gymnastics on Saturdays, and for him, I think that it’s enough. I’m afraid that if I over schedule him, it will A.) break our bank, and B.) break him. Having a tired and moody kid on my hands because I’ve pushed him too hard scares me… and I don’t think that he can handle it. I’d like to try special needs soccer this spring, and if he likes it, we’ll keep up with it, but with Willy? You never know. Plus, let’s not forget the endless appointments and therapies my son has almost every day after school.

Uuuugh. It’s enough to turn my hair white. But in the meantime, as our kids parents, we know them the best. We know what will make or break our kids, and sometimes over scheduling is good… and sometimes it’s not, but you don’t know until you try, right?

Have a great Monday everyone, and number 3 is a lie. I can’t I skate to save my life, never mind chasing after a little hockey puck with a stick, and staying on my feet at the same time.

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