Credit Where Credit Is Due

I have a confession to make. I'm not actually SuperMom. Shocked? I thought you would be. Yes, while I am reminded of the sad truth of my mere mortalness on a daily basis, I DO try to make up for it by arming myself with enough super-powers to fake it...and most of the time, my kids buy it.

My biggest secret weapon? Love & Logic Parenting. (Yeah, go take a look if you're curious. I linked to FAQs.)   I guess would describe Love & Logic as a philosophy...or an attitude, maybe, versus a set of techniques--although L&L does provide you with many, many examples of techniques that have been used (and proven to work)...which I like...because I like a big arsenal. Oh--right--the philosophy? Well, this isn't the official (or even the best) overview, but it's MY overview: that you can ENJOY parenting. And that you SHOULD enjoy it...and that it's okay to have a laugh (or many) at your children's expense now and then.

And that really resonated with me. Because *MAN!* I get bogged down a lot. So, when we took on this parenting thing about a year ago, I proceeded to immerse myself in Love & Logic. Nick has reminded me more than once that this is generally my technique for coping with every new stage of life. I think most of the time he sees it as amusing...only occasionally annoying., when parenthood struck, I struck back with two different L&L books, a DVD, and even this past January, a 3-hour workshop with one of the "official" L&L guys (Dr. Charles Fay, if you were curious...if you weren't...well, sorry).

Oh right...and I follow L&L on Twitter. And like it on Facebook. (By the way, will Facebook EVER change that ridiculous descriptor?!) So...uh...yeah...I guess I'm immersed.

But it's proven to be helpful...because I'm also one of those people who needs constant reminders of the bigger picture (recall the bogged-down-ed-ness mentioned earlier). And that's what my immersion has helped me remember: that success as a parent means I help my kids get to the place where they don't need me anymore (broadly speaking). That I ALLOW them to make lots of little mistakes now, when the stakes are pretty low; so that later, when the stakes are pretty high, they make the right choices. Lofty? Sure. But something inspiring to shoot for.

And guess what? It's really really hard to let my kids make mistakes. I really really want to swoop in and rescue them from pain, from disappointment, from discomfort. But I love them, so I want them to feel those things and recognize that the choices they make are directly linked to those things...and that different choices have different outcomes.

But enough about me. Well, maybe.

This post was inspired by the many compliments Nick and I have received in the past year. Now, it's very possible that you all were just being polite, and deep down you are convinced we are CrazySternButNotProtectiveEnoughWeirdos. Either way, I wanted to give the credit to the proper channels. Because we are living (or attempting to, anyway) the Love & Logic model--it's really not due to any particular brilliance of our own. And while I'd like to claim brilliance in parenting...or anywhere else for that matter, I just can't. I'm not THAT deluded. (Pause here for self-deprecating smile.)
And because THIS

Is usually more like THIS

 I also just wanted to share how sold I am on what it is I'm trying to do.

I really believe in it.

Because it...(wait for it...)... actually works! Yeah--for real!

The first time I knew I was onto something was last fall, when we were at my mom & stepdad's house, playing in the backyard. Finnley had wandered away from my immediate reach (no big deal) and was headed toward the grill (big deal). At the very moment he was reaching his cute little fingers up to one of the knobs, I sang out, "UH-OH!" as forcefully as I could (if you've ever heard me try to project my voice, you'll know why I found it necessary to sing-yell at a child who was maybe 15 feet away). AND HE FROZE. And turned and went the other direction!

Hallelujah! Success! Sweet, sweet success! My child listened to me! To ME! Up, up, and away!
Concerned...or just faking us out?
Yes, it was brilliant.

Now, that was a great, very gratifying example of when the L&L model works. There are lots of times when it doesn't....or rather, when I apply it incorrectly...or when the kids don't respond to it. Or...when the weather just turns really cold after being really really nice out and the entire universe of children goes crazycakes and teachers and daycare providers all over the world simultaneously pull their hair out...but...that's only happened like that one time. Last week. And most of this weekend.
Other than that, it's going great.

And I mean that, even though that last statement now sounds sarcastic. (Side note: Sarcasm has no place in Love & Logic parenting...which is a particularly difficult pill for me to swallow.)

Nevertheless, we are trying to stay the course. Because we are seeing the results.

Ahh...that familiar glimmer in his eye
And anyway, all I wanted to say was Thank you for all of the encouragement and very kind compliments along the way. And to let you know that I can't take all the credit. Most of it maybe, but not all of it. (And yes, that was sarcastic, in case you were wondering.)

In the meantime, if you ever get the chance to see our somewhat-uncomfortable-to-watch parenting style in action, feel free to ask us and learn more about what it is we're doing...or attempting to do. You might find that we don't have the slightest idea either...but then again, maybe we do....*laughs maniacally*

Tomorrow I'll leap tall buildings.

Happy reading....



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