Imagine yourself, if you will, with a headache in the confined space of your car with your two beautiful lovely arguing children (yes I am being sarcastic) screaming at each other in the back seat. You want to yell at them and tell them to shut their traps, but you know they will probably end up crying and that will just make things worse. You could also tell them to be quiet but who knows how long that will last, especially when they will more than likely start telling on each other to get one another in trouble.
Ahh the joys of parenting people. I swear my kids wake up each morning and make a list of every little thing they want to argue about in order to annoy one another and ride my last nerve into the sunset. For the longest time I would fight with them to be quiet and stop arguing but now I have a game that I have developed that resolves this problem with not only a smile on my face but also my children’s and it only cost me one invisible dollar.
It is called the quiet game people. I have decided to pay my children one dollar to whom ever can be quiet the longest. One dollar is all it cost me for minutes on end of unadulterated peace and quiet. Do you know how valuable that is to a mother? Let me explain, if my husband offered me a diamond ring or a weeks worth of quietness in a place where no one would be asking me for anything, hands down I would take the latter.
Here is the kicker……I never actually have to spend the dollar. You’re wondering how does that work? You are probably thinking “My kid would be begging me for the dollar until I gave it to them.” The way I get away without ever having to spend the dollar, is because I can pretty much always guarantee that my kids either never did their chores at home or will do something else they aren’t supposed to do and then they lose the dollar for misbehavior. So when Thing 1 ask for his dollar, if he wins the game, I simply ask “Is your room clean?”, “Did you behave in the store today?”, “Did you put away the dishes out of the dishwasher?” Usually the answer to this question is “no”, so he loses his dollar.
Some parents, I am sure will think it is bad for me to try to bribe my children to be quiet or to “lie” to them about getting the dollar knowing they will never actually get it, and to those parents the only thing I can say is; tough cookies my friends! As the blog title implies I am trying to keep my sanity so I do what works for me and my household. My kids like playing the game as they are in hopes that they will someday get this imaginary dollar, and I enjoy the momentary peace and quiet it buys me. I don’t claim to be a perfect parent but this game works for me so I am sharing it in hopes that maybe it will work for some other mom who is struggling to keep her sanity.
In closing I would say that this tactic (on the battlefield of parenting), I am sure will only work for a few more years as my children are 4 and 6 now. I know as my children get older that they will begin to recognize the fact that they don’t actually ever get the dollar. For now, I will enjoy these moments of silence that my imaginary dollar affords me.