“You must have the nicest boys. Ever.”
I’ve heard this before. People read my blog and assume. Don’t.
My boys are equal parts good and rotten. Recently, the rotten’s winning out.
This school break, they’ve made it a sport to find new, inventive ways to torture each other. If they can make one another cry? Oh, that’s just cake.
I hear arguing in the basement playroom then the telltale stomping on the stairs. Angus slinks into the family room and slumps himself into a chair. He’s nothing if not dramatic.
“Problem?” I ask.
“Is it true when F. said his life would be better if I’d never been born?”
“No,” I say. “He’s just being mean. Did you do something to make him mad?” F.’s temper rivals the Hulk.
“He said it after I punched him.”
Instead of “Hum, do you think that was a good choice?” I go with “Words can hurt more than punches sometimes.”
Angus’ shoulders slump. “Yeah,” he frowns. “They can.”
“But maybe you shouldn’t punch him just the same.” I can’t help myself.
I yell down the basement stairs and tell F. and I. (because he needs to hear this, too) to come upstairs.
“Boys,” I start my little lecture, pacing back and forth in front of the couch as they watch.
“I do not like how mean you’re being to A.” They both break into giggles, not an audacious start.
“OK,” I change tactics, “if you don’t have anything nice to say. Try not saying anything. At all.” It’s an adage we all should adopt.