Wednesday, May 30, 2007


Our living room couch is a convertible futon sofa. It folds flat into a futon bed. Last year, U developed the dangerous habit of climbing up to the top of the couch to sit and hang out. We couldn't get him to stop. So we folded the couch flat, into its bed shape, and decided that would be the configuration until he was mature enough to be safer.

On Monday, earlier this week, we decided it was time to put back the couch shape. U climbed it once on Monday, and we were both very stern: "No! No! No! It's dangerous! To je opasno!" He was crushed, as we expected, but he didn't argue. As Don said, "I'd rather he got his feelings hurt than his body hurt."

Last night, U and I were sitting on the couch together reading Maisy books and singing along to the Maisy theme song on TV. In high spirits, U began to climb to the top of the couch. "No!" I said sharply, and only once. He stopped, abruptly, and came back down to a normal, sitting position. A sorrowful look clouded his features, and he looked into my eyes. "Sorry," he said in a small, clear voice.

He got covered in kisses and wrapped in a big hug.

I can't help but feel proud of him -- we never told him, "Say, 'thank you,'" "Say, 'you're welcome,'" and yet he consistently does. I feel proud of myself for being such a good role model, but especially I feel proud of him for intuitively modeling himself after civil, good behavior. He taught himself how to behave graciously, how to respond to kindnesses and how to return kindness. Now, he's taught himself the use of apology, as well. To me, this is a lot more advanced than learning to parrot a set of words meant for a set of situations, which is what possibly might result from just being trained to say "thank you" and so on.

Go, U!

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