Is it better for the kids or the adults?
I’ve always had the thought, and I’m backed up by almost all research, that routine for your children is tantamount to an absolute necessity. Children feel more secure, they know what’s happening in their lives, they are able to process times of the day, important traditions, and discipline much better when there is a routine. Rewind …. a consistent and clear routine.
But today, I had an epiphany, routine is almost more important for us parents. There is always something that is going wrong in our world of parenting. A new stage, a new problem, a new scenario, lots of new things that we previously hadn’t thought of yet. In my world, every child tends to have a new reaction to the routines, and sometimes they don’t always work for every child. But, they always work for me ….
As they should since I came up with them, so does that mean that the routines are there for me and not my children?
Routines for me, allow me to look like I know what I’m doing, even if I’m momentarily floundering at the new direction something is taking. The new swear-word that came home from school, the new reaction to extreme tiredness that they could only have picked up from my nightmares, or the new justification for a behaviour based on a previously set-in-concrete routine, that funnily enough is no longer going to work if they have this new route to take ……
I have a plan though … one that may give me a bigger headache …. but this weekend I’m going to allow some ownership of the morning, and afterschool routine, to fall squarely on the heads of my children. I’m going to provide the timeline/ framework, but I’m going to allow them to choose when stuff happens and what the consequences are when they don’t …..
My ‘control-freak’ mother hat is saying that this isn’t going to work, but some days it doesn’t work anyway, so I’m going to give something new a try … and even if it turns out that I’m mother extraordinaire who should just go back to doing it all my way, it will provide a little bit of thought, and a change of tactics for the upcoming weekend … wish me luck.