Thursday, January 12, 2012

King of the Castle

Owen had a bad day yesterday.

He walked through the door full of tales about the intricate system of snow forts in their school yard, who controls the various pieces of real estate and how a mean spirited group were systematically taking them over.

Gee, that sounds familiar.

Not only is this a story straight out of my childhood elementary school, but a very simplistic example of the "real world".

There was ranting, some very real frustration...and then a plan was made. No way was my son being pushed out of a fort he'd worked hard on, nor was he allowing it to be destroyed. I felt like I was watching a disgruntled employee formulating a plan to secure his much valued job...or possibly planning a takeover! At the very least, he would defend his territory at all costs.

Today he came home from school smiling. The first thing I asked was, "How go the snow fort wars?" He beamed and told me, "Great, we joined the group that destroyed ours....then when the bell rang we kicked it in!"


My first reaction was to berate him for stooping to their level. Then he went on to describe the new set of rules the VP had devised. New laws, of you will. Seems there were far too many territorial squirmishes going on and they felt the need to regulate things a bit. This idea amused me and I will admit, impressed me more than a little. Owen wasn't nearly as impressed. But after a good discussions on the need for rules and the parallels between this childhood angst and real life situations, he conceded to the necessity.

So in the end we turned it into a teachable moment, and I was secretly proud that my kid came out on top. Is that the right approach as a parent? Who knows. But for today all is right in the world, or the playground I suppose, and here in the real world we know that sometimes that's all we can ask for!

I'm the king of the castle, and you're the.....well, you get it.

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