Who knew Hank Jr. sang lullabys?
When you are a parent, you will find just about anything to calm your child down in the middle of a tantrum.
Many times you resort to things that may not be looked highly upon in some circles.
I admit that over the past few weeks, I have done a few things that I swore I would never do as a parent.
I’ll never do that with my children. I used to think that before I was a parent, but I have quickly found that, yes, I will do certain things if it will calm the stormy weather.
My husband Jason and I decided, for some reason, to take James with us to do some last minute Christmas shopping last night. The entire night was a disaster.
When you get our son James out of his normal evening routine, you will pay for it dearly. Normally, James is safe in his house by 5:30 p.m. A fruit snack with a drink quickly follows. Then it’s time for trains, trucks, books and other activities until near his bedtime.
Then another routine continues. It’s time to get into his pajamas, brush his teeth and begin, what we call, the “wind down” process.
When you load James up in his car seat at 5:15 p.m. and head to the store, you have completely knocked him off his rocker. It’s one meltdown after another.
I vowed that I would never use the “treat” reward on James. I was under the illusion that he would listen to what I asked of him, obey those requests and life would be merry.
I was really wrong in that department.
As Jason and I made our way through the store, James tried to climb out of the grocery basket. And I don’t mean, raise up a little. He was dangling one foot over the thing.
A harsh tone and the mother’s look wasn’t working. And then I broke down.
“Do you want a sucker,” I asked. “If you behave, I will give you a sucker.”
James should get an Oscar for his next performance. He remained seated, behaved, quiet...until his sucker was gone. Then it was back to climbing out of the basket.
James also gets very impatient in the car. He likes to point out trucks, school buses, towers, clouds, rainbows and other things. But when he gets bored, it’s time to start whining and grunting to get out of his car seat.
Sadly, Jason and I have discovered that the only thing that will calm him down are the sounds of Hank Williams Jr. Yes, I said Hank Williams Jr.
We have a CD of Hank’s hits in the car, and I think we have listened to it 100 times. But it’s the only thing that will stop the tears.
James grins and tells us that Country Boy Can Survive is “his song” while All My Rowdy Friends Have Settled Down is “Daddy’s song.”
Hank Jr. could walk into The Herald office right now, and I would probably ask him to leave. I have heard his voice enough for my taste.
Jason and I understand that James is going through the tough patch of being a three year old. We thought the “terrible twos” were bad, but I think the threes are tougher.
We laugh about the things we do to calm him down afterwards, but during the tantrums, Jason gets a dazed look in his eyes and I am on the verge of crying with James sometimes.
But it’s something we would never trade anything in the world for. We have a son who is healthy, happy and has a great set of lungs on him.
Just don’t be alarmed if you hear Hank Jr. blaring out of a car that passes you with a child providing backup vocals. If you follow us, I’m sure James will share a sucker with you.