Thursday, December 6, 2012

Snapping a parenting moment

I played substitute photographer for a friend of mine who had volunteered to take pictures at a local story time's holiday pancake breakfast before her daughter got sick the same morning. This was the same friend-photographer who took our family pictures this year. I certainly didn't mind helping her out.

Moms {and a few dads} lined up with their kids to pose in front the beautifully decorated alter at the church that hosts the weekly story time. I snapped some of the whole family, some of siblings, and some of little ones still unsteady on their feet standing in front of the Christmas tree. Several wore holiday attire and many wore red.

And then there was my boy, with his gold, navy and gray. With a motorcycle on his shirt. He was eager to pose for a pictures, so another friend took the camera from me and I went to sit with my boy. Only that's not what he wanted.

"You not be in my picture. I be by myself."

My 3-year-old son totally kicked me out of his picture and I wasn't in the mood to argue about my presence. So I shrugged my shoulders, took the camera back, and snapped Ben's picture. He grinned. And I went on taking other pictures.

The more I thought about it, the funnier the story became to me. I've told it several times since, and I keep thinking I should take something from it. You know, grow from here, become a better momma with this. Here's the thing: Ben's love languages these days are tickling or arguing. He has the best belly laugh and it comes out with the slightest tickle. I tickle him just so I can hear him laugh and rid the moment of any crankiness brewing.

Arguing is a different story. He'll try to engage in "uh-huh" versus "na-huh" battles that I usually refuse. I'm trying to learn to pick my battles, yet be consistent {with a firm yet gentle approach ... seriously complicated stuff this parenting business!}. I suppose that's why I just walked away from the picture and let him sit by his own mischievous self in front of the beautiful Christmas tree.

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