Monday, June 9, 2008
We do our best to keep our children's world as a haven where anything is possible and imagination is greatly encouraged. At times this philosophy can be trying.
Some time ago Jacob welcomed imaginary dinosaurs into our household. Some are friendly but for the most part he insists on fighting them off. With a sword. His sword is anything he can pick up--a stick, a potato masher, train tracks, his sister's links--and brandish in his best swashbuckler manner. The end result is usually destruction of some sort or another or inflicted pain on either one of us or his sister--and the wily dinosaur always manages to escape.
Despite our repeated proclamations of "We don't hit!", confiscating the "sword" and multiple time outs, the behavior remains. So we attempted another route--all the while doing our best to maintain the idea that imagination is good.
If you're fighting imaginary dinosaurs then you need to use an imaginary sword.
No, Mommy. I need to use a real sword.
But real swords don't work on these dinosaurs. Just pretend.
Then this morning--after going over this whole concept once again, the little man had an answer for me.
Mommy, an imaginary sword won't work. I actually need something in my hand!
I have no counter-argument for that. Advice right now will be welcome. All you veteran parents out there--anything?