A little more serious today about the kids. Jana recounted the story of taking our kids to the nice, indoor church playground down the road. Andi and Joshua were having a good time, until some boys a year older decided to start picking a little on Joshua. They would wait for him to come around a corner, hide, and jump out yelling and growling.
The climactic moment was when one of them cornered Joshua at the top of the jungle gym and wouldn’t stop yelling in his face. Joshua was crying with this little brat standing over him.
Since she had already talked to the moms of the kids about it, and they sort of dismissed it with “I think that’s just how they’re playing today” comments, my wife scaled the jungle gym. Then she, in a nice way, told the kid to knock it off or she would tear his arms off and beat him with his own appendages. Then Joshua and his cool friend Wesley went to a different playground to play.
So here’s the thing. I’m not good at this part of parenting. Even hearing the story I was about to jump out of my skin. And not just at the parents, but at the snot-nosed jerks themselves… even if they are 5. At least I know I can take them.
I’ve got to grow in this, but boy, it’s going to be hard as the kids grow. Hard to watch them and not be one of “those parents.” Hard to watch them struggle and even harder to know the right time to step in and the right time to stay out. As I grow as a parent, I become more and more convinced of my need of the wisdom of God to make those kind of decisions.