2.24.2010

Things I Love Thursday: Life Lessons

My daughter received her first life lesson this week.... in kindergarten.  I honestly did not think I would have to worry about Marissa getting in trouble in school until, well, maybe never.  She's always been such a brown-noser people pleaser and teacher's pet. While Marissa can be a challenging kid, she's a good kid.  Well, this week we both received a reality check.  Her teacher e-mailed me and mentioned that another girl in the class returned after school had dismissed with of all things, Marissa's lunch money.  And get this... Marissa had given it to her, as well as two other girls.... all $20 of the money that was to go into her lunch account.  Ugh.  What's worse, when I questioned her about the incident, she denied it.  She's not a good liar.  Double ugh.  It was at that moment when she started stammering about God-knows-what-story she was making up at the time and looking back at me with pleading eyes that I thought to myself... "What do I do now?"
I knew that she was lying, it was obvious.  She knew better than to give away $20 of money that was not hers to give.  I had never had to deal with such a large situation like this one with her and I was kind of at a loss as to what to do.  I started to panic... What would my mother do?  Would I handle it the same way?  What would a good mom do?   Then I gave up and channeled my momma-instinct and went with my gut.  I told her that I was sorry, but didn't believe her story and that I knew she was lying. I told her that it was wrong to give things away without asking permission. Then I told her that she could spend the night in her room with the light off until she was ready to tell the truth.  Then..... all hell broke loose.
According to her, I was a horrible mom for not believing her and she wasn't afraid to scream this at the top of her lungs.. for quite a while.  Then came more made up stories, and more time in her dark room.  After three (or maybe four??) hours had passed she finally came around.  Yes, I am well aware she gets her stubbornness from me...  She cried big crocodile tears when she told me she was sorry and that she did indeed give the money away.  She was sorry that she had lied and she knew that it was wrong to give her lunch money to friends.  In a way I was very proud of her.  She had learned her first major life lesson and understood the mistakes she had made.  I had learned a lesson too.... I think once we "grow up" (heh) we forget about all of the mistakes we had to make along the way to get to where we are, to be the people we have become, to learn from those mistakes and to not repeat them.
So after the confession, it was time to come up with a punishment.  This has equaled out to be a packed lunch for two weeks - she is not allowed to purchase lunch because she gave the money away... (she was allowed to purchase lunch at school twice a week before the incident), no TV or computer use for one week and an apology to her teacher and friends at school today.  Of course, I am second guessing myself with how I handled the entire situation, like I always do.

What do you think?  How have you handled similar situations with your children?  Anything you would have done differently?  I am all ears...




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4 comments:

  1. That's a big one!! I think you handled it great and the way you handle stuff like this really sets the foundation for later - I hope. I have one in kindergarten too - but he's been in trouble before :)

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  2. Sounds like you handled it AWESOME! I remember the big lie lesson - ours came at age 4 and involved her acting like she was in pain for days. DAYS! It was a HUGE lesson and one that she hasn't forgotten. So awesome that you held your ground. That's the hardest part. Way to go!

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  3. I am not looking forward to things like that. I think you handled it beautifully. Trying to get the truth out of a kid is impossible! My son is 4 and barely understands the concept.

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  4. I think you did awesome. Do we have the same child? Ugh. I hate it when they lie.

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