I thought once my girls were in school they would stop fighting, or at least not do it so much. Which ended up being an ignorant idea. Then I thought, having something fun after school would help them get along better. Boy was I wrong there as well! An activity after school made the day longer and accentuated their exhaustion and hunger. Which produced a more hostile environment. Wednesday, after their Zumba dance class the girls were ornery, particularly Eden. Every word that came out of her mouth showed unpleasantness. So being pregnant, going to school, and having Jake gone during the week; I gave into weakness. In the tone Eden was talking to me I belted back at her, but 10
00 times worse. She started to cry and blubbered out, “Mom, you’re acting like a Great Big Bear.” Ayzia concurred with Eden’s observation. I regressed into a five-year old and roared, “Oh yeah? Well you’re a Wolverine. If I’m a bear, you’re a wolverine!” There was a bit more ranting until we settled down. We said our prayers and I read them a couple of chapters out of a Junie B. book by Barbara Park. Then I went up to the computer and googled wolverine with the thought in my head, How the heck did I come up with wolverine? I also felt silly for acting so immature. This was the first video I watched:
Wolverine and Brown Bear
Oh my goodness, if that didn’t fit perfectly into my night. Some of the sentences the narrator was using felt familiar: “Wolverine’s age-old rival, the bear.” “Bears compete directly with wolverines for food.” “In many cases, direct confrontation is best avoided.” I couldn’t help relate this to the age-old complications between parent and child and how both will fight for control. The ending was most poignant and good advice; “In many cases, direct confrontation is best avoided?”
Philosophizing more on the interpretation of the video I could add: it is lack of understanding my children when I get upset, in some parts of the country fewer children are being born, and for some kids the safety of their habitats are dwindling. Combine these elements with their easily susceptible spirits, make my children vulnerable to the negativities of the world. I have to remember that right now, their world is what I provide for them. The bottom line is, I shouldn’t be giving them an untamed bear for a parent.
Feeling enlightened, I mentioned the video to Ayzia and Eden in the morning. “If you behave well after school I’ll let you watch the video.” After school they remembered the video. They were behaving well so I let them watch it. What happened next you might ask? Eden got upset because it wasn’t a video, it was just a guy talking. I tried to explain how it was a video. But she wanted to see them fighting. So I found another one:
Wolverine vs Black Bear
Eden was still disappointed. I’m not sure what kind of outcome she was looking for and I can’t remember what she said to spark my question, “How did both of these videos end?” Ayzia answered, “They both walked away.” Stressing the message into their mental awareness I concluded, “Sometimes the best way to end (not solve because neither animal got their food) an argument is to walk away.”
If you’re interested books, this is the one that helped me relate to the first video:
“You’re Wearing That? Understanding Mothers and Daughters in Conversation.” The author is Deborah Tannen.