Character Building

Moments of public embarrassment with my screaming (for fun) child I often refer to as character building.  My guy screams a high pitched scream probably because he enjoys my reaction that differs from my at home reaction.  He screams for fun with a big smile, knowing that going in time out at the grocery store is next to impossible. 

I don’t often receive parenting advice when I am out and about with my children; perhaps I’m unapproachable or give off the “I’m already embarrassed, please don’t talk to me” message.  If I put more thought into it, it just may mean I don’t get out often enough, there is advice to be received I just have to get out from behind the four walls I call home.

The best parenting advice I have received from a complete stranger was in Superstore several months ago.  It was a lady who had probably completed raising her children and was now enjoying her grandchildren; as she looked on with smiles at my child who had taken an interest in sharp screams in public places.This sweet lady smiled at me and mentioned that I should try singing to my child, a distraction of sorts, while I shop.  I continued walking and took her advice immediately, my son’s favourite song at the time was, The Wheels On The Bus.  It worked!  I expressed to my two year old that I would not sing anymore if he screamed and since he enjoyed hearing his favourite song, we can now shop without high pitched screams.  I am now the mom you will see singing children’s songs as I walk up and down the isles at the grocery store.  Our choice of songs now varies but will either be The Wheels on The Bus, ABC’s or She’ll Be Coming Around The Mountain.

Building character may be considered a child’s gift.  Patience is tested, and built.  Embarrassment is no longer over the little things.  Singing for all to hear is now an option.  Strangers will talk to you way more often with a little one in tow…  Isn’t it funny how life changes when you no longer just have yourself to consider.

Photo Courtesy freedigitalphotos.net

Below is a list of character traits to show how becoming a parent improves character..

A-Z Positive Traits How Our Character Has Grown
A Affectionate Hugs for Health – (Hug Your Family)
Affable Strangers compliments on your little ones what choice do you have?
Ambitious Chores won’t do themselves
Active Sitting for long periods is not an option
B Brave Defending your child becomes a priority
Brainy We are learning constantly
C Courageous Amazing the courage we find when we need it- Singing in Public!
Calm Counting To Five
Capable We can do it!
D Decisive We’re in charge, we need to make the decisions.
Dependable We’re reliable because we have to be.
Diligent We are consistent in order to teach.
E Energetic Somehow we find the energy to keep on keeping on.
F Faithful We’re always there for our children.
G Generous Hugs, gifts, love we have plenty to share.
Giving Hugs, gifts, love we have plenty to share.
Gentle Always a gentle touch when needed
H Helpful Help is always available.
I Intelligent We are learning constantly
Imaginative What shall we do?  How shall I teach?
Impartial I love equally, I treat equally.
L Loving I love you so much, I want what is best.
Logical Discipline is important, I have to be strong in this decision.
Loyal You’re my family, you are my priority
O Open minded There must be another way!
P Patience Patience, Patience, Patience – tried and tested
Precise I’m in charge, I have to be.
Q Quick Catch it before it falls! I’m coming to get you!
R Responsible Teaching discipline is challenging but a must.
Reliable I’ll be there when you need me.
T Tolerant The things we tolerate.
Tenacious We have to stand our ground to teach discipline
Thoughtful We’re always considering our child’s needs
U Useful We’re always needed
Unpretentious Drool/tears/food on our clothes can be humbling
Unselfish Someone so small takes priority over our own needs
V Versatile We have to roll with the punches, everything changes, nothing stays the same.
W Wise Always learning how much we don’t know!
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10 thoughts on “Character Building

  1. What a wonderful idea! I always gave the look of death! Now that I’ll have a grandchild very soon, I’m going to sing! How Happy! And I’m also going to pass this along to my Dearest daughter! 🙂 Of course, my grandchild will never experience the look of death from her Nona anyways, but baby might from Mommy! Not any longer, we now have a solution thanks to you! 🙂

  2. Have you tried the inside voice outside voice talk? Mine are grown now, but when we were about to go into a public situation, I would quiz them on the appropriate behavior before entering. (My kids are 10 months apart – double trouble.)

    Do we use our inside or outside voice in the grocery store? Can you let me hear your inside voice?

    After they performed appropriately, I would praise them and make sure they heard me tell their grandma and great grandma how proud I was of their behavior.

    As you pointed out, the screaming is attention-getting behavior. Shower him with attention when he is NOT screaming. It works.

    • I appreciate your suggestion! I walked to the major department store yesterday and I allowed the screaming as I walked outside for half an hour, only because I wanted to just walk and not be correcting him again (laziness). Parenting is about continuous training and if I had mentioned to him that it was an outside noise, I could have used it as training opportunity. Too bad. Thank you so much for your input.
      Wow, 10 months apart. They must be so close to each other, that is great.

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