I am the proud mother of the cutest, busiest little 20 month old toddler. Judah is super energetic from the time he wakes up which ranges between 6-7am regardless of when he went to sleep.
So Judah is discovering his will and unfortunately also recently discovered the word “Nee”. It was the cutest thing when he imitated papa with a “No man” when he didn’t feel like doing something. This has now developed into an irritating “Nee-eee” which screeches up an octave (taught to him recently by another toddler friend).
Today was an interesting morning at the Pick ‘n Pay! My little guy loves the R5 electric toy cars outside the shop and was adamant about sitting in the car for the entire morning. Even the coercion of a treat couldn’t sway him! I needed to move onto shopping (and Hosea wasn’t enjoying this sunny spot either) and so Judah’s play session came to an unwanted end. Upon being forced into the trolley entering the shop, Judah’s sirens of “Nee’s” and screams erupted whilst he stood in the trolley -threatening to jump out. This was the first of his public displays of determination and ended in a spanking to help him understand that his will was subject to mine:) Many thoughts crossed my mind in this split second. The stares of the judgerige bystanders, the possibility of him falling out of the trolley etc. I stood my ground and did what I believed right. I decided that Judah’s good character and discipline was more important than the opinions of those surrounding me. Judah quickly realised his shouts was not going to get him what he wanted and settled down. A few seconds after that he brightened up and asked about going in the electric car again later.
It was quite entertaining seeing people’s response to this scene. I understand that many people believe spanking to be wrong and I don’t judge them for their opinion. My husband and I are the result of loving occasional corporal discipline and feel that we benefitted from it. More importantly we choose not to “spare the rod and spoil the child” according to our biblical guidelines.
There was an elderly lady who stood in shock and went out of her way to come see what I was doing while shaking her head the whole time. Another lady came to me and said that I shouldn’t give him a hiding in public. A third lady (the packer) told me that my son was naughty. She went on to tell me how children that age are the “stoutste dinge en hoe hulle net erger raak”. I dont think she was prepared for the mouthful coming her way. I disagreed with her telling her that he might have momentarily done something which was “naughty”, and most definitely age appropriate, but that he was not naughty. Labelling a child as “naughty” and telling them that it is what they are; shapes them into exactly that. It instills shame for who they are instead of guilt for an action they did. I suggested that if she continually call her Children “stout” that that is what they’ll become. Funny thing is, I don’t think one can truly understand this moment unless you live it out. I didn’t. I always secretly thought parents needed to discipline their “naughty” children better at home so this sort of scene didn’t happen in public.
A shop can easily become any parents nightmare! It is the perfect testing grounds in a little child’s wonderland of electric cars, sweets and toys. I will continue shopping and bringing my sons with me and chances are this scene might be re-enacted. So, if you see me doing my thang in Pick n Pay, just smile and wave. I believe small moments of discipline can prevent a life time of disaster.