Many times in life I have been faced with some major moral dilemmas. I have once [ok, maybe twice, or more] used a little saying that guided me through some really difficult times, [I am a little embarrassed to say this but it's funny so I am saying it] "when in doubt-throw the truth out". Yes, I did... HOWEVER, as I have grown as a person and found that this little saying hasn't really helped much, in fact it made things much worst at times I have changed my motto. Now, I can honestly say [yes, honestly] that it is a lot easier just to tell the truth. No cover ups, no back tracking, no excuses, just plain and simple truth. It's easier. And, with the craziness of my life at times making things easier is just the way I need to go.
With the little exception of Santa and Jingle [our elf on the shelf] and well, the Easter Bunny, the Tooth Fairy, The Birthday Fairy [that one I made up, she decorates our bedrooms on our birthday and leaves a small present--again, a lot of work], when someone asks "does this look ok" and I say "Yes" even if it doesn't, and well anytime I can spare someone’s feelings, I tell the truth even when it is hard to do. This brings me to my thoughts on Jingle. At first the concept seemed awesome. It was cute. It was a little incentive to get my son to follow some cardinal rules in life, however, I am questioning all of it now. I don't want to take the fun out of it, I just can't help but to think what did I do? Jingle is one more cover up, one more lie, one more thing that my son will eventually know I lied to him about. Will he grow to think "what else has this woman lied to me about"? Will he just think it was fun while it lasted? Will he appreciate the hard work I put into moving this thing around my house nightly for a month? And most of all I wonder why I decided to allow an elf to dictate the behaviors of my son? Really I have lost control that much? I need a pretend elf to hold over his head to tell him to behave? Same with Santa, same with the rest of the clan of pretend people who sneak into our home and leave gifts.
I have to put it out there that the little guy is also a creeper. Those eyes follow me! I made the mistake of telling my son that the second we took him out of the box and I had to take him out [not him because he can't touch him or he will loose his magic] that Jingle made a kissy face at me and winked. Yes, a "kissy face". So now every time I look at this baby faced little devil I envision him puckering up and and blowing kisses, not to mention the wink. What the [curse] have I done here? I am now paranoid, my son is paranoid and asking me to talk to this thing to tell him specifics about his life!!! If this all isn't the definition of insanity I don't know what is! HOLY [curse]!
After a restless night and exactly one week of little Jingle in our home, I have come to the conclusion that 1. I can't tell him it isn't true now because there goes the whole concept of every other magical creature in his world. 2. I can't stop moving him because he will think he did something wrong. So I am left with 3. While it can be fun [if I stop over analyzing it] I have to stop using these magical people to control behaviors. I HAVE TO CHANGE not Jingle, not Grant, and I don't have to ruin the innocent fun of it all. I just have to set boundaries as I have prior to Jingle and I have to stop reminding Grant to behave because Jingle, Santa, The Easter Bunny, The Tooth Fairy and yes even the Birthday Fairy are watching. I have to explain that he needs to behave because it is the right thing to do. Just like I remind myself when I am faced with a moral dilemma, little lies to bring out some fun, little lies to make others feel better, little lies to protect the best interest of someone’s self-esteem.
With my new found outlook on Jingle, I will enjoy the fun of it. And it really can be that simple. As for him making those kissy faces, NO MORE!!!
The most important thing I have learned from my week of insanity is that when something doesn't feel right, change it. Change is the only certainty we have in life.