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  • The Negotiator

    September 12, 2006

    This morning, as I’m standing at the kitchen sink washing up breakfast dishes, there was this exchange:

    Sean: Mom, can I have a popsicle?

    AM: No Sean, you just had breakfast.

    Sean: Well, then how about an ice cream bar?

    AM: No. You can have an ice cream bar after dinner.

    Sean: Mom, can I have dinner?

    * * *

    I could have said “Go play!” or “I said no!” or any number of other mom-isms.

    But instead, I dried my hands, went to the freezer, got out an ice cream bar and sat down on the kitchen floor and shared it with him. Just because. Just because he looked so cute in those dinosaur pajamas with his hair all askew, just because he opted for negotation over whining, just because I sometimes over-compensate for having to be the parent who metes out most of the discipline, just because as I looked at him looking up at me I wanted to gather him up in my arms and cover him in kisses, just because life is too darn short. Just because.


    1. Momish says:

      My mom did things like that a lot and to this day I feel so blessed! “Just becauses” go a long way!

      September 12th, 2006 at 11:02 pm

    2. Deanna says:

      I agree – “just because” is a GREAT reason!

      I have an 8yr old who is sure to be THE most successful telemarketer on the planet – always eager to go for the 2nd and 3rd and 4th ….and 5th ask and always with an approach that almost sounds as if she’d never asked the first time….

      September 12th, 2006 at 11:13 pm

    3. PastorMac's Ann says:

      Awwww, that’s sweet. Attaway to cherish these special times that are so fleeting.

      The “just because” times are the times that he’ll remember throughout his life.

      September 12th, 2006 at 11:36 pm

    4. Angela says:

      This is tender. And a good reminder. I used to be able to do this, or at least had the ability to, and I think I’ve lost sight of it recently. I love that you recognized he was negotiating. Thanks for the reminder. I think I’m going to print this and post it up to remind me.

      September 13th, 2006 at 12:00 am

    5. Lynn says:

      If I could have my kids come home one more time and slam the door. Or leave their clothes all over their rooms. Or blare their stereos. Or whine that there is never anything to eat in this house. If…..I’d be one happy mom. I miss my full nest……I miss the action and all that went with it. I was blessed and didn’t even know it. So, enjoy your ice cream for breakfast. Nobody said you had to have eggs first. Because life is too darn short.

      September 13th, 2006 at 12:19 am

    6. Blog_Antagonist says:

      Yep. Sometimes you just got stop and eat the ice cream. Good for you. I don’t do “just because” enough. Thanks for the reminder.

      My youngest is already a pro at arguing a point. I’m saving for law school. :?)

      September 13th, 2006 at 5:49 am

    7. bbeth says:

      One afternoon, in ordinary conversation, my two teenagers made the comment that they had never had banana splits. I said,”Let’s have them for supper!” I went to the neighborhood store and quickly bought what I needed and we had banana splits for supper. That has been many years ago and they still talk about their mom fixing banana splits for supper! That was one of my better moments, I think.

      September 13th, 2006 at 6:34 am

    8. Perri says:

      All very good reasons.

      September 13th, 2006 at 7:27 am

    9. Jules @ Everyday Mommy says:

      Bravo, Mommy! Bravo!

      September 13th, 2006 at 7:41 am

    10. kim says:

      Girl, you don’t have to explain yourself to us. Rules are only good if they’re questioned. Sometimes, you realize there is no good reason not to have ice cream after breakfast or sometimes as breakfast.

      September 13th, 2006 at 7:52 am

    11. Sarah says:

      YOU WIN! Mom-of-the-Year! You get MY vote AND Sean’s!! And, I think with the “dairy” of the ice cream, that’s healthier than donuts or pop-tarts, anyway!

      September 13th, 2006 at 8:00 am

    12. Katrina says:

      What a great mom you are! Those are the things that build wonderful memories – for you and for Sean!

      September 13th, 2006 at 8:08 am

    13. Kaci says:

      Good call – I’ve been there myself & must remember your alternative to hollering “Get. Out. No. Ice creeeeam!” next time around!

      September 13th, 2006 at 8:13 am

    14. Aunt Murry says:

      And you know what, sometimes an ice cream bar is a great after breakfast snack!

      September 13th, 2006 at 8:17 am

    15. boomama says:

      I love that.

      Just because.

      September 13th, 2006 at 8:18 am

    16. AnIowaMom says:

      Man, I had the morning from … well, you know where. Reading this made me sad that my oldest son left for school angry at me, but I’m glad this was the first place I read this morning because it’s going to change our day. I’m going to pick the boys up from school a few minutes early today (to not ride the bus will be a treat in and of itself) and we’re going to stop by McDonalds, go INSIDE and get a shake! Why? Just Because! I’m also posting a pretty sign on my fridge, right after hitting the “post” button on this comment, that reads JUST BECAUSE … that will remind me of what’s important and bring me back to reality when things get a little intense around here. THANKS Antique Mommy … I needed this post today! 🙂

      September 13th, 2006 at 8:23 am

    17. nancy says:

      You are a great Mommy!! How fun, and those just because things sometimes mean the most.

      September 13th, 2006 at 9:05 am

    18. Goslyn says:

      This is such a great reminder of what is truely important in life … Ice Cream!

      Love this post.

      September 13th, 2006 at 9:11 am

    19. Shalee says:

      Just because you wanted to see the smile of pure surprise and delight on your sweet boy’s face.

      What a great way to say “I love you and let’s have some fun.” I agree. You are a great mom.

      Oh, and can we have those for breakfast in October? It’s a daily dose of dairy, you know.

      September 13th, 2006 at 9:34 am

    20. Susan J. says:

      Thanks for that tender reminder. It makes me want to go get mine out of school and play hookey. Or at least go hug them. I miss those little boy days sometimes.

      September 13th, 2006 at 9:41 am

    21. Chris says:

      How fitting to read this post just shortly after reading your 911 post.


      September 13th, 2006 at 9:48 am

    22. Susan says:

      Your post brought tears to my eyes… just because I can relate.

      Sometimes it feels even better to say “Sure, why not?” rather than doing what we perceive as being “right.”

      September 13th, 2006 at 10:29 am

    23. GiBee says:

      Oh, your son must have been so surprised and excited! What an awesome thing to do!

      And, I respectfully disagree with Shalee — you should NOT have them for breakfast in October, but rather for DESSERT after a good old-fashioned taco bar… but, that’s just me!

      September 13th, 2006 at 12:01 pm

    24. Paulette1958 says:

      Just because you are his mama and you dearly love him is enough. And you are right life is too short and he will be grown before you know it. Have you ever read the book I’LL Love you forever! to Sean? I read and sang my children that book forever to them growing up. This book reminds me of you both. Please if you havent get this book and share it with Sean.

      September 13th, 2006 at 12:06 pm

    25. Big Mama says:

      It’s the just becauses that become great childhood memories.

      September 13th, 2006 at 12:21 pm

    26. janet says:

      Nothing wrong with letting them have their own way espically with a quick return like that.

      September 13th, 2006 at 12:55 pm

    27. fridaynightgirl says:

      Bravo! It’s so easy to get caught up in the, “you let them eat WHAT at WHAT time?” that you miss a chance to surprise your kid.

      It’s just so darn fun to see Munchkin’s face when I tell her that, yes, she can eat the peanut butter straight out of the jar. I get a, “mom, you are the BEST!” look. Totally makes my day. Thanks for such a heartwarming post.

      *looks at watch* Is it time to get off work and pick up Doodlebug, yet?

      September 13th, 2006 at 4:33 pm

    28. starrynite says:

      Aw, that’s really touching. The love you have for your child just seeps out through your writing so I can’t help being affected by it. Thank you xXx

      September 13th, 2006 at 4:36 pm

    29. onetallmomma says:

      Hurrah for you!

      September 13th, 2006 at 5:08 pm

    30. Roxanne says:

      My mother called one day. She talked to my then four year old daughter who excitedly told her we were eating dessert!!! It was 8:00 a.m. We had dessert after breakfast. My mom said she would have given me dessert FOR breakfast–and I can attest to that.

      Life is too short, indeed. Your story is glorious.

      September 13th, 2006 at 6:21 pm

    31. kacey says:

      I’m not sure whom I love the most, you or Sean. You both are outstanding—-him for his logic and you for your compassion and fun.

      September 13th, 2006 at 6:38 pm

    32. MotherPie says:

      So. A fun time was had by all. And that is what is important, right.

      September 13th, 2006 at 9:26 pm

    33. Cmommy says:

      Ice cream for breakfast is ALWAYS a good idea 🙂

      Which is why we used it on waffles instead of syrup, just a few days ago.

      You made a memory to hold in your heart. Hugs, Chrissy

      September 13th, 2006 at 10:27 pm

    34. Kvetch says:

      You’ve got it all right. Sean will remember that for a long time (especially tomorrow morning – lol!)

      September 14th, 2006 at 6:42 am

    35. EaglesWings98 says:

      Amen Sister! Just because is right on!
      I love it! Mine is 3 1/2 and I’m watching him grow into a young man before I know it he’ll be out the door…and trying to enjoy those just because moments!

      September 14th, 2006 at 10:09 am

    36. Kai says:

      What a lovely story, and a lifetime memory for you both!

      Loved the argument from Sean btw….I think you have a future lawyer on your hands!

      September 14th, 2006 at 7:29 pm

    37. jamie says:

      Thanks for the reminder that it’s ok to bend the rules every once in a while, & if you do, your child will not grow up to be a drug dealer or serial killer…

      September 14th, 2006 at 10:05 pm

    38. Christina says:

      You sound like an awesome mom. Sean is very lucky. Enjoy!

      September 16th, 2006 at 2:59 am

    39. Wendy Boucher says:

      You are the best kind of mom.

      September 16th, 2006 at 2:45 pm

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