I have noticed – more recently than not – that the child and I use a form of agreement in our bartering and negotiating that is probably common to most people.
It follows most of our attempts to make the other person do something. “I’ll play one more game with you if you clean up the rest of your room.” Pinky promise – and the deal is made. It’s quite comical, actually, to listen to most of our negotiations. Is it the best parenting method? Probably not. But shut up – the kid is fine.
Our most recent negotiation was, by far, the best and most masterfully-planned (if I do say so myself) on my end. I feel like there should be some back story to this…
Picture it: Charleston, 2013. The Capital Classic basketball game between WVU and MU. Emily, Dusty, and myself are all snug and bundled in bed while visions of sugar-plums danc…sorry – got mixed up for a hot minute. We’re sitting on the couch watching the game on TV. Emily’s mom and her husband are big Marshall supporters; therefore, Emily finds it funny to cheer for MU and not WVU while she is with Dusty and me. [Cute kid, eh?] MU led most of the game until about three minutes left, when WVU finally took over. I think we can continue now…
Emily was wanting me to play a game again that we had played earlier in the evening. I thought this would be a good time to pull a pinky promise deal. The deal was – I would play the game (2 times) as long as she let me video her rooting for WVU. The pinky promise was made – the deal was set – and the following video is the proof…
Absolutely epic. I especially love how she tried not to laugh at the beginning of the video. Brilliant actress and could possibly have a future in improv comedy when she grows up… 🙂
So, of course, we sent this video off to her mother. She made me check the phone every two seconds to see if there was a response. Of course, when her mother did respond, Emily immediately explained the terms of the deal and expressed her allegiance to Marshall. It was definitely a good time – and yes, I did play the game twice with her once the conversation with her mother ended.
The point? There really is none. It’s something that Emily and I do that I find special. I know there will be a day when it stops and the pinky promise will no longer exist in our negotiations…so I hold onto it now and cherish every time it happens.
Parenting is definitely challenging – but it’s also fun at the same time. Moments like these can highlight that fun and are great examples of how children come into their own and develop their personality. It’s a blessing to watch and I’m excited to see what else life has in store for this one. I won’t miss a single minute of it.
” One thing I had learned from watching chimpanzees with their infants is that having a child should be fun.” – Jane Goodall