In life no one makes you feel as guilty as children do and if your a parent you know what I mean. You may do things that bother your spouse, girlfriend/boyfriend, friends and even your parents, but nothing compares to doing something that brings that guilty feeling out when it pertains to your kids. The other day I was reminded very strongly, by my 8 year old just how much power my kids wheel over me.
The morning started out just like any other morning, with Mom and Dad helping the kids get off to school. As I was walking my son to the top of our driveway, so he could waite for the bus, he suddenly remembered that I had not packed him his snack. I was going to rush back in and grab him something, but his bus was already coming up the road. I told him that it would be okay to go to school and asked him what time "snack time" was at school and he said 10:15, so I promised to drop off his snack before 10:15. Well you all know what happened, Dad forgot about the snack. I did not remember about his snack until around 2:00 and that's when it hit me, my first round of guilt and I knew I was going to be in trouble.
The thing about guilt is that it is worse when the person you hurt forgives you,even though you know that they were hurt by what you did. My son Jason is one of those types of kids, when he got home from school he said nothing to me about my error. I could tell that something was wrong, but he was not going to say anything. When I finally got him to talk about what was bothering him, he of course told me about how he had no snack to eat with his buddies and how he his friends had to share their snack with him. Jason of course also told me, with complete sincerity, that it was okay that I forgot his snack. The look of disappointment on his face said volumes to me though. I of course had to make up for this error on my part, as a parent nothing cuts as deepas having that look of disappointment from your kid.
So what did I end up doing last night, I was in the kitchen baking until 8:00. I made my son two of his favorite desserts, banana nut bread and oatmeal chocolate chip cookies. Once into baking he reminded me that he owed his friends for sharing their snack, so I made extra cookies for his classmates.
My lesson learned was that, I know who I don't want to disappoint in my house and its not my wife it's our 3 kids. My wife by the way agrees with me, that she is okay with upsetting me but never wants to be in the position of disappointing our sons.