Thursday, August 21, 2008

The Family Conference Room

One of my goals as a parent has always been to ensure that my boys always feel comfortable talking to me. Anytime, anywhere, about anything. I try very hard not to put limitations on them, and say things like "Not now" or "Not here", and I've certainly never said "We can't talk about that."

Because of this open attitude, I'm able to have some very honest conversations with my boys. I'm also able to witness some awesome examples of positive "sibling-ness" between the two of them. Tonight was a perfect example of both.

I had just gotten home from work, and Bug met me in the driveway to show me a life-threatening blister on his thumb from the brakes on his bike. So I sent him inside, told him to wash his hands well, and meet me in the conference room. While he and I were in there, and I was performing major blister surgery, Jock walked in. And proceeded, in typical big brother fashion, to reassure Bug that it really wouldn't hurt. Certainly not as much as if he had gotten one on his foot. He then went on to distract him by talking about himself.... I mean, sharing a story where he had done something, that still sounds like he was bragging. Well, actually, he was. But, since Bug idolizes Jock and thinks his big brother can walk on water if he wanted to.....that really was a good way to distract him from the needle I was poking into that big blister.

We got done with the blister surgery, Bug was mummy wrapped for sterilization, and then sent on his way. At which point, Jock sat down in the only available seat in our family conference room and started talking about his new girlfriend. And how her parents want to meet him, so can he please go over to her house this weekend? And also, he really wants to hang out with her, so please, Mom... can you take me over there?

So I, as blunt as I've ever and always been with this kid, reminded him that my feelings hadn't changed. I still didn't think he was old enough to be having sex, so could he please remember to behave in a way that all parents involved would agree was appropriate? And so he reminded me that he's waiting until (and in this order, mind you) he gets through college and gets married. I just looked at him, waiting. So he grinned that very lethal cute teenage boy grin, and PROMISED he'd behave appropriately, got up and hugged me, then walked out of the conference room.

What's that you say? You're wondering about our family conference room? Let me show you:

And for my conversation with Jock? He was parked right here:

And despite the fact that our family conference room also doubles as the bathroom, I am still committed to maintaining my stance on never saying to my children "Not here" or "Not now". And if that means we're having conversations about girlfriends, sex and weightlifting while they sit on the toilet and I lean against the counter...... so be it. I can live with that.

PhotoStory Friday
Hosted by Cecily and MamaGeek


MamaGeek said...

Ah, yes conference room numero uno. With kids, that thing is always booked I imagine!

So does it even have video-conferencing? SWEET.

Totally feel ya!

CrackerJacks said...

Great post, it made me laugh! It gives me something to look forward to!

shutter happy jenn said...

That is one interesting conference room. =) I had a great time reading your post.


Flea said...

:D You da mama! Good to hear the girl's parents want to meet Jock. It's nice that that still happens. I want to meet any girl and parents involved with Oatmeal Head. Jock sounds pretty balanced.

I'm very bad about saying Not now, or Wait and ask dad. :(

Burgh Baby said...

You rock. That is all.

Rockin Austin said...

Can you imagine what would have happened if our parents had that conversation with us?? Love it, you're such a great mom. :)

Tiaras and Tantrums said...

I'm still miling! This is A GREAT post!! I love this - can I borrow this "conference room" idea for when my kids are older???

patty said...

Mad props for letting your boys talk to you any time, any where.

It was a little dicey with me and my boys the other night, seeing how all they wanted to talk about (with my sister with stage 4 cancer in the car with us) was DEATH and DYING and DEAD BODIES and HOW PEOPLE DIE and WHY PEOPLE DIE and HOW DID OUR DOG DIE, ANYWAY?

I felt bad having to postpone that particular conversation by directing it elsewhere. But otherwise, I practice your philosophy and it serves me well.

Crazymamaof6 said...

super love it! you are the sweetest mom ever! and does that still apply if you are on the seat? and they are leaning against the counter?

so glad he promised he'd behave appropriately.

and what a GREAT big brother to distract bug,in his time of need. idol worship goes a long way.

that girl said...

love the conference kids are ten & seven...will be borrowing it, if okay with you

Cecily R said...

I agree whole heartedly with Burgh. You do rock. I only HOPE I am as calm and collected in five years. And that my kids know we have a Family Conference room too, wherever that may be.

You totally rock.

Chris said...

I have nothing but respect for your attitude. It is parents like you that are going to be the salvation of the next generation.
Keep up the good work.

Kidzmama said...

I have the same attitude as you. Anytime anywhere. The bathroom is perfect for that. Our Funny talks to me in the bathroom while Clever talks to me at night before she goes to sleep.

I'm hoping that one day, when my kids are older I can be just like you. You're definitely a cool mom.

Carrie and Troy Keiser said...

What a great name for that room! It is for sure a room where once one person has entered, you can be sure someone else will soon join you.

Stella said...

I love that it's the bathroom!!

Ours growing up was the kitchen table.

Every family should have one.

Teena in Toronto said...

That's quite the conference room you have :)

It's great that you can have such honest conversations with your kids!

Happy blogoversary!

Shellie said...

Love the conference room, it's perfect. But, was the lid up or down the whole time? Just wondering...