Thursday, November 5, 2009

More on the parenting (Buddhist!) class

I know you've been reading all my normal drivel posts and wondered with tooth-grinding anticipation, hey, when is she going to tell us MORE about that parenting (Buddhist!) class?! Well the wait is over, you just hit the life lottery, read on....

The Man and I are at week six of our eight week parenting class. I have learned a lot, and although I'm pretty sure it's not what the class is designed for, I now know: I am an exceptionally crappy parent, my parents TOTALLY screwed me up too, and it's a vicious, evil cycle that will repeat forever more if we don't, Fleetwood Mac be damned, break the chain. (Did you like how I did that? Feel free to send money and whiskey, or McDonald's coupons.)

I want to clarify really quickly, mainly in case anyone from my class has stumbled across my blog, that 1. I'm not a drunk (see yesterday's post) and 2. I totally respect this parenting technique. It's just reallyreallyreally HARD.

Despite being taught from a psychological standpoint, in a Christian environment (it's through a class at church), I swear I could also read a copy of the Dalai Lama's book Open Heart which, shockingly I know, I also happen to own, right along side this class. You guys all know that the DL and I are tight, right? I mean, he doesn't call like he used to (okay, he never really called me) but we're super BBFFs! (That'd be Best Buddhist Friends Foreva!) Okay so I'm not Buddhist either. What's not to love and all, but I still way suck at meditation, and killing my desire is probably not going to happen in this lifetime. In fact, if we go all Buddhist on it here, I'd probably be reincarnated as a slug or sea anemone or something, when clearly I would MUCH rather come back as a large and pampered house cat. I digress....

Anyway, last night we learned that it's very important to assume the best in other people. Say you're stuck behind Coin Woman at the store? Assume she is broke, really needs that carton of Kools and only had coins! Don't assume she's a giant ass clown who moonlights as a cheapy hooker! See? You just think the very best of people and it brings out your best! This is the theory. Obviously it's easier said than done.

When applied to your kids, it goes like this. Your kid hits the other kid in the head with a block. You say: "You really wanted Billy to know you're mad, but you didn't know the words. Hitting is not okay, hitting hurts. Next time, say 'Billy, I'm mad.' Let's practice," Of course the reality is that this shit usually goes down when you are running ten minutes late for your annual OB/GYN exam and you have one sock on and the dog just got in the trash and ate some bad chicken and took a crap on the floor, and you stepped in it which is why you only have one sock on. Then, you get pissed at your crap-covered sock and Tommy who hit Billy and now everyone (including you) is crying, and you scream "I'm going to hit YOU in the head with a block if you don't move your ass!" Or maybe that's just me. (Obviously, the names are fictitious. You all know I have Princess and The Destroyer!)

So being Buddhist or Like Jesus, depending on how many Eastern Tradition vs Western Tradition liberal arts classes YOU took in college, is really really hard during the average day. Seeing the best in ANYone, spouses, kids or Coin Women included is really really hard. But, since both Buddha AND Jesus sort of kicked a lot of ass - maybe I can try.

See, just now, I heard a weird 'shhhhhhh' noise and went to investigate. Turns out The Destroyer was emptying my brand new Febreze spray in his room! Instead of doing what I wanted, which was to drag them both out and beat them soundly in the hall, I said "You liked how this smells and wanted to try it but didn't know how to ask. Spraying this isn't okay, and it's dangerous. Next time, ask Mommy and I will help you." Then I dragged them out and beat them soundly. Kidding! I am totally kidding. I did do the first Buddhist/Jesus part though. Aren't you proud? Again, I'm accepting a new blender (do NOT get me started! can you hear me weep???) and Bacardi mixes.

Comments, questions, Jesus/Buddha like?

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