Monday, March 2, 2015

The Horror

Poor Mac felt so wronged last night.  The kid, as you may know, plays the violin like a dream.  Some of the time he likes playing the violin. The rest of the time, I make him play it.  Making him practice is a hard job, and I have to do a puzzle, with it's calming properties, while I do the forcing.

Anyway, last night there were lots of tears and "I hate violins," during the practice negotiation.  Right away, I backed off on my 10-piece quota because I could tell it was going to be an epic battle.  "Five pieces," I said.

"Four," he said.

"No," I said.

And the sobbing.

Finally, he played the five, I read a story, put him to bed.  He knocked on my door thirty minutes later, weeping.  "It's not fair," he said.  "Why do I have to play an instrument and Shef doesn't?"

"That doesn't seem fair, does it," I said, walking him back to his room.  In fact, I've often felt this was my mistake.  I failed to make my oldest child's life suitably miserable.  If I had inflicted the pain of music,  I could more easily coerce the younger.  Since I don't have a reason why Mac has to do it while Shef doesn't, I just rubbed Mac's back and validated his feelings.  "I can hear that you really feel like it's not fair."

He sniffled and nodded.

"Can I tell you a secret, though?  Shef is not that good at playing music. You're much, much better."


mm said...

I like the secret... well played.

Anonymous said...

The secret was an inspired move! And it is a recognition of talents that are different. Mom

LH said...

The secret made me smile.