I woke up this morning to find a chunk of snow fell out of the sky and landed atop my portion of the planet. This is going to make walking three kids to preschool full of extra dilly dally. I'm already practicing what to say when the first handful of snow is being packed into a tight little ball. "Hey! No throwing snow... it's the rules" I love blaming the rules. I even sometimes say after much moaning and groaning about not being able to do somersaults in the neighbors yard or smoke cigarettes in the back alley while swigging whiskey "I know, I know, it's not fun but it's the rules." and I shrug my shoulders like there isn't much I can do about it.
Discipline is such a weird abstract kind of thing these days. Ella learned from observing other kid parent interactions that counting is totally bad and the whole world may implode should Mom ever make it to three. So when all reasoning has been thrown out the window, on occasion I will holler "I'm about to start counting!" at which time Ella stops pretending she can’t even hear me and wiping jelly on the couch and stands at attention. I have no idea what would happen if I got to three or even if that's where I should stop. My understanding is that's where other parents stop; I think it’s the universal amount of time one can keep whacking the dog in the head with a foam sword before your mother chases you down.
It'll get weirder, soon there will be grounding and removing privileges and I'll be forced to take responsibility for making the rules. There will be long drawn out lectures about "choices" and "what kind of person you want to be" and then hopefully the mother of all kid controlling apparatus will take form... GUILT and it will steer her through her teen years until she can regain some sanity and actually figure out what kind of person she would like to be. I'm not saying that I wouldn't have made good choices as a teen without my Mother's voice in the back of my head, but I do know that hearing "I’m disappointed in you" was way more crushing that being grounded. Those words can hang on your shoulders like a wet blanket reminding you why smoking in the back alley and swigging whiskey may sound fun but isn't such a smart choice. So I'm going with what I know.