They Always Want More
“I want a lollipop.”
“I want two lollipops.”
Change lollipop to cookie, donut, hours to play IPAD, quarters for arcade game at grocery store, or toys, and you have a daily conversation that goes down between my children and myself. One is never enough. They always want more.
Because more is better. More is more fun. More is more. But I have to teach them limits. And that is not always fun. Some day they will be able to have more than one lollipop at a time. One day they can finish off an entire box of donuts in one sitting. One day, if they choose, they will be able to spend an entire day playing the IPAD on the couch in their pajamas. But not now. Not under my watch. (Okay maybe these have all happened a few times but I’m deeply ashamed of it.) Why? Because I don’t want them to form bad habits that they will carry into adulthood.
I want them to know that there is a reason for sayings such as “everything in moderation”, “too much of a good thing”, and “you can’t have your cake and eat it too.” (Although I’m still not sure why you can’t have cake and eat it too.) But you know what I mean. You don’t want your children to become adults who indulge in excess. Habits that are formed in childhood follow us. Hence my desire to have at-home sales parties because of all the Home Interior and Tupperware parties that my mom subjected us to growing up. My older sister sells Avon, I sell Norwex, and my youngest sister is having a Pampered Chef party this week. Old habits die hard people. Hard.
Growing up my siblings and I were raised by parents that believed in the phrase “you only get one.” Never heard of it? That’s okay. I think they made it up. My mom bought one box of fudge rounds per grocery trip. One box. You should also know that she went grocery shopping once every two weeks. So one box split amongst four children did not last long. So we literally only got one. Same for Poptarts. By today’s standards, we were severely mistreated. Now as an adult, when I see other parents let their children have five popsicles in one setting or five anything, I keep thinking, “Ummm, don’t they know you only get one?” I’ve actually embraced this multiple thing a little in that I will now give my kids a second bag of fruit snacks if they ask. Baby steps.
But most of the time I’m setting limits. I’m making them eat healthy more often than not. I’m making them put down their electronics and play outside. I’m turning the cartoons off for a couple of hours and handing over the scissors and glue so they can make something like, I don’t know, a spaceship out of all my empty Norwex boxes lying around. I’m saying no to more and yes to less in hopes that they find truth in another well used quote “less is more.”