Have you ever finally agreed to let your child have a special treat, only to then resent the time it takes them to choose which one they want? Almost like you resent giving them the opportunity to begin with?
In our house, sweet treats are incredibly rare…so the offer of a milkshake and cake in a cafe or a refreshing icy pole on a hot day is very, very exciting. And I have to remind myself that it is such a rare and exciting treat that the kids are overwhelmed and literally about to pee their pants over the choices available.
Similarly, when I offer to paint their faces, I have to remember to be patient while letting them flick through the face paint book looking for the perfect makeup to suit their mood/make-believe scenario. It’s very easy for me to tell them to “hurry up and choose, I’ve got things to do”, but I try hard to remember the feelings I had as a kid when I was finally given the opportunity to choose something special for myself.
I remember drooling over catalogues as a kid, spending hours choosing a new book, or new piece of furniture for my doll’s house. That’s at least half the fun, especially when you know you’re actually allowed to choose something at the end of all the daydreaming and fantasising.
So when they’re choosing what colour to have their nails painted, what to have for their school lunch order, which movie to watch or what colour balloon they’re going to choose, I try so hard to remember I’ve offered them this special treat to make them happy. The least I could do is give them the gift of enjoying the excitement, anticipation and choice that goes with it without getting impatient.
So when you do offer your kids a special treat, remember that letting them take their time to relish in the excitement of all the choice is just as important to them as the treat itself. All that umm-ing and ahhh-ing is so worth it!