Sunday, February 17, 2008

No No? NO!

I tried. I really did. And though I was not successful at eliminating that ugly word from my vocabulary (or theirs, either, I might add), there were a couple of surprises.

1) I don't say it as indiscriminantly as I thought.
2) There are times when I blurt it out before Sawyer even finishes his sentence and
3) Sage hears it a lot more than Sawyer.

The first one came at 8:32 a.m., when Sawyer was sitting on the toilet and claimed he was done doing his poopy. I replied "No, you're not done." But you know, this was true. He was not done. And he needed to be done because we were leaving for the aquarium within the hour.

Next came at 8:56 a.m. It was issued to Sage. "If you don't eat your breakfast, than no aquarium." Wait - is that techinically a No?

There were three No's at the aquarium. All directed at Sage. One was shouted when she insisted on running behind a building where I couldn't see her. Another came when she continued to splash water in the touch pools despite my repeatedly asking her to stop. And the third was...actually, I don't remember. I have written down on my notepaper that there were three. Rest assured, she deserved it!

The next two came when Sage, who fell asleep 10 minutes from our house and then did not transfer, refused to take her nap. She kept asking for things that she threw out of her crib. Then, finally, I heard her say "PRIVACY in my bed" which meant she'd done a big poop. So she got what she wanted, which was for me to come get her.

Sawyer did not nap either, so now I have to napless kids. Imagine! They decided to ride their rocking horse together. They were laughing and having a fabulous time. But Mean Mommy didn't like the way it was tilting and told them NO, it was dangerous, only one at a time. They looked at me like I had just grown a third eye in the middle of my head. In retrospect, they were probably fine and my Wet Blanket NO was unecessary. Ugh.

The final one came when Sawyer started to ask me for a treat and I cut him off with a stern NO before he got the words out. I felt bad about that one, as it was pure reaction. I believe I actually clamped by hands over my mouth but it was too late. That crazy NO was already out and filling the air of the living room.

I did wonder, upon review, how I could've handled each situation differently. What other words could I have used to stop certain unpleasant or unsafe behaviors?

I think No is just easier than trying to be more diplomatic. It's short. To the point. But it's not always effective.

So my next act is to find different words. I'd like to be more positive. Sometimes it does seem like saying No is just a very bad habit. I don't want them to feel shut down by the No Backhand.

The point of the project was for me to become more aware. And now I can work on it.

Unless they do something REALLY egregious, like try to steal my Cadbury Mini Eggs (yes, it's the season again!).

Any thoughts? I'm dying to hear if anyone else tried it!


Janine said...

BRAVO!!!! To a good effort!! That is better than I could have done....It is hard not to say no.

Simply Lovely Gifts said...

I actually made a very conscious effort with #1 and #2 not to say "no" - instead I'd say "uh-uh". I just didn't want them saying "no" all the time & it was quite successful. Totally forgot about that with #3, so guess what her favorite word is??

Amy said...

Great job Cheryl ... you are stronger than I believe I would be!!! I was going to attempt this but I blew it at 2:30 a.m. when I said "No, you missed your chance to eat" to a hungry, picky eater ... I didn't even make is 3 hours into the day ... I will try again another day ... LOL

Cheryl said...

Thanks, Janine!

Leslie - Do you think just maybe it might be a personality thing with No. 3, who seems a lot like my little darling? ;)

Amy - See, if you just poured the plate over her head, you could've saved yourself a No! lol

Melissa said...

I am so impressed by your first trying this, second getting so many other moms to try this and third your insight on your own parenting! :) I did try it and I blew it pretty quickly. However, I did learn that, in general, I don't say "no" as often as I thought. But, I say other versions of "no" like, "I don't think so" and "not a chance". Either way, thanks for making me more aware of my words! What a fun experiment.

Cheryl said...

Melissa - Glad you "enjoy" it! lol

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