I’m a first-time mom. I’m new at this discipline thing. I don’t know what I’m up against.
I want to empower Jake. I want to set him up for success. And I understand that in doing so, I will need to set boundaries, to enforce those, and to discipline him when need be. What I don’t understand is what that looks like right now.
We are entering the phase. “No Jake”.
In my defense, I think I have a pretty kid-friendly home. I try not to say “no” very often. Really the only things that are off limits are the toilet, the Christmas tree, and Cole’s hair (Cole’s hair is like Jake’s kryptonite!). And I’ll admit, it’s hard to say no to these faces…
For my own growth, I have been studying a book called “Celebration of Discipline” by Richard Foster. It is about Spiritual Disciplines, and how to put them into practice in your life. The premise of the book is that discipline is actually good, as it helps you grow and mature. It is hard (in the context of this book it is hard work on the individual’s part) but the rewards are there. Maturity. Wisdom. Knowledge. Understanding.
In the same way that I am studying discipline in the spiritual sense of the word, I desire those outcomes in my kids’ lives too. I want to discipline them, so that they grow, mature, become wise, and gain understanding. My struggle right now is figuring out what this looks like for Jake. I’m not sure he understands the word “no”. I’m not sure he attributes any sort of negative consequence with the word no. I want to be firm and not be a push-over, but I also need to work within his cognitive abilities. And I don’t always know what that looks like.
I can close the bathroom door. I can put obstacles in front of the tree. I can make sure Cole is not where Jake can grab him. But ultimately, I feel it is important for Jake to grasp the concept that some things are not okay, instead of me just taking away the temptation.
Like I said, I’m new at this discipline thing. Thoughts?