Does this kind of thing happen to anyone else?
Ben grabs the timer off the counter. He’s not supposed to play with it; but I’m distracted and let it slide for a minute while I finish measuring out the flour and other dry ingredients for my bread. After all, it isn’t a matter of his safety and I can see that he’s not using it to bash things or hit people.
In the meantime Sophie grabs it from him. I find myself refereeing the screaming match and demanding that they take turns with it, forgetting for the moment that it’s not something either of them is supposed to be playing with.
I am very bad at trying to prioritize which lesson to teach: that “We don’t play with the timer” or that “We need to ask politely and not snatch from each other and take turns.” In the grand scheme of things the second lesson seems much more important. But now I’m being inconsistent about the timer and in the grand scheme of things perhaps consistency in discipline is more important than a particular instance of a lesson about sharing? These are the moments I find most stressful about parenting: having to make split second decisions and then second guessing myself