Lately I have tried to limit the concept of dessert in our house. Not because I’m opposed to it in any way. It simply drives me crazy to have the entire meal focused on it. Will and Hunter increase their outrageous antics to reach that Holy Grail of dessert! Desserts in our house are pretty lame anyway, generally consisting of fresh fruit, yogurt or occasionally some ice cream. It doesn’t matter if I’m offering up a plain ol’ apple though, call it dessert and our entire meal is focused on the silly apple. So when I made the mistake of dangling the prospect of blueberry sherbet in front of the boys I had no idea Will would show his true colors.
Hunter must have eaten a few too many banana chips for his snack earlier. He was digging in his heals and wouldn’t touch anything on his plate. I knew I shouldn’t do it but I was flustered and couldn’t stop myself declaring, “Hunter, if you want dessert you need to eat your dinner.” Ughh. I hate that phrase!
And so the stand off began, and of course, he didn’t eat a bite of dinner. I scooped up a bowl of ice cream for Will and felt so sorry for Hunter as only a guilt-ridden mother can. He sweetly sat there sulking, not even throwing a minor fit to help me justify my actions. And then his older brother came to the rescue. He simply scooped up a huge spoonful and said, “Hunter do you want a bite of mine?”
There was no way I was going to tell Will not to share his ice cream, and anyway, I was secretly beaming inside. Will, has sharing issues with his little brother, earning him the nick-name, Mr. Grabby Pants. My darling four year old continued to offer up bite after bite of his bowl of ice cream. When they were finished, he said, “OK, mom, let’s go to bubbles.” Our cue that it is bath time and then bed.
Hunter, with his tummy full of nothing but ice cream followed his brother upstairs. Mommy, still beaming at the generosity of her older son, followed humbly behind. It occurs to me, this is just one more example of how it’s all about control. Will had complete control over his bowl of ice cream and he happily shared. Hunter felt he had no control and refused to eat even a bite of his dinner. And Mommy had lost all control!