On our way home from after school activities today, my kids (5 and 8) started bugging each other. You know, the typical, “Stop looking at me.” “Mom, she’s looking at me.” Followed by the other sticking out their tongue just to turn it up a notch. Sound familiar?

The thoughts racing through my head went something like, “Seriously? I really don’t have time for this. I’m exhausted. Why can’t they just get along? Enough already!”
Fortunately for all of us, I kept those thoughts to myself, but became aware of them. I then told myself they had a long day and were clearly tired. They were most likely in need of some attention and connection.

We got home, went into the house and rather than join their chaos, I took a deep breath and chose the tool of “doing the unexpected and using humor.” With an upbeat, silly tone, I said, “I see 2 exhausted kids who seem to be very in need of some LOVE!” I then grabbed them both and started kissing and hugging them. Within seconds, we were ALL laughing. Crisis averted!

We can either choose to engage in the drama or choose to connect. I find connection leads to cooperation which leads to calmer, happier parents and kids. The choice is ours – it starts with us!

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