I think my kids like hearing stories of when I was a kid because they realize that I also made some of the same mistakes that they make or have made.
When I was six years old I kicked in a brand new storm window. So new that the "workers" were sipping ice tea on the porch above. I lived in Central Phili. at the time of this incident. And I remember the day, and the events leading up to breaking this window.
I was a very mild kid. A bit of a challenge I am told with constant chattering. I am sure that my kids got this trait from me. I was standing outside on a hot day watching, like any curious child, the process of installing a window. We lived in a row house where the daylight basement window came right up to the sidewalk. It was very cool to watch and the best activity going on that day so there I stood. Asking question after question to the workers. I asked if it was a strong window. The workers told me it was very strong and could handle any storm, thus the name "storm window".
I asked if the new window could handle thunder storms, and rain storms and the answers were yes to every question. They finished up and picked up their tools. Miss Elizabeth ( our nanny at the time) came outside and told me to come and eat lunch. I went inside, ate my lunch and went back outside. The workers were sitting on the porch quenching their thirst. I went down the concrete stairs to the sidewalk and decided that I really wanted to test the strength of this window. My curiosity was no outburst of aggression, nor was it anger, just curious of it's strength.
With my clunky saddle shoes I tapped the window and remember thinking.."yep this is strong". I kicked the window a little harder. "Yep, the workers are right this is sure a strong window." And then with my short little leg and clunky shoe I decided to give it my best kick and I soon learned that the window was not as strong as I thought. The window was shattered. I remember looking up and seeing everyone peering over the porch, looking down at me and yelling. I told the workers that it was no such a strong window after all.
The logic of a child. Emily shares now what her thought process was behind many of her moments of what seemed like a devious child. I understand completely when a child looks with a blank face and has no explanation for what they have done, as I too once was curious.
Perhaps that is why I have so much patience and understanding in matters such as these. I took my bike apart when I was 10 years old. Right down to the last bolt. I wanted to build a bike. And the only way I figured I could do it was to take mine apart and I did. I got into big trouble and was spared a spanking when I said I could put it back together and I did. I was curious how bikes were made. My mind was not intending to upset anyone, or break rules that were never communicated. What parent needs to post a sign...."DO NOT TAKE THINGS APART!!!" My mom should have because there were a few other things I took a part and believe me taking a part a sewing machine was no easy task to put back together.
I understand when they come to me with that look of "whoops" didn't expect that one. How do you handle those "whoops" moments? I hope with patience and understanding. You never know where that curiosity will take that young child as an adult. Blessing!!