Back in the day, my Mom would always complain about how ungrateful me and my sisters were. I was a good lil dude, though! Always polite and well-mannered, yo. Or….. I think I was, anyway. It was a long time ago, I don’t really remember.
Regardless, now that I have kids, I get what my mom was talking about. As a parent, you do so much, and give up so much, for your children, but man they can be sooo unappreciative. However, I’m realizing that, sometimes, it is because they honestly don’t know any better.
Take last year, around Thanksgiving, for instance. B’s kindergarten classmates were doing projects on what they were thankful for. When his teacher asked him what he was thankful for, B said…….juice.
Yeah, for real, juice. Even a few days later, K asked him again, and he said ‘I told you three times already, orange juice!’
Stupid delicious juice took priority over his fam, friends etc. When I heard that, I went all old school lecturing grump on him:
“When I was boy, we couldn’t afford juice. We drank purple Kool-Aid. I had to walk 30 miles to the store there and back, uphill both ways, to buy some. I was up at 5:00 AM every morning to do my chores, and I used the money to buy my own Kool-Aid. It wasn’t given to me. I had to mix that sugar, water and purple up, too, with a wooden spoon that I made from a tree that I chopped down myself!”
OK, you got me, I didn’t drop that on B. I did feel pretty lousy, though. Clearly, he loves us, but way to communicate that appreciation, buddy. I was honestly questioning whether I was doing a good job instilling the right morals in him.
Then, one night, he came running down the stairs, freaked out . B said that there was a scary wolf in his room and that I needed to come get him. I figured that it was typical Bedtime WTFness, but I went to check anyway (with him behind me, because he was terrified). When we got there, he pointed across his room. I walked over, and there was a book on his floor with a freaky looking, creepy eyed wolf on the front (no, it wasn’t a picture of Kevin Garnett from his days in Minnesota. ZZZZING!) Anyway, it was just a horrible choice for a cover.
However, to chill him out, I told him that the wolf wasn’t bad, and I read the book to him. Turned out that the wolves in it didn’t eat any kids in their sleep. I hid it afterwards, out of his view, just to be safe. B was then cool after that.
Look, I have no idea if B really understands gratitude at this point.
All I know is that juice won’t save him and his sister from wolves. I got their backs for that. And even though they won’t say it now, I’m sure they’ll thank me later.