The Story of the Tweezers
***A few years ago after discovering my missing tweezers in my son's bathroom with the ends burnt***
B wakes up, heads to my room and immediately asks for the tablet. Of course.. So I say "Well Good Morning, how about you brush your teeth and wash your face first?" B: "Ok but where's my tablet?" Mid sentences I go..."Also can you help me find my tweezers?"
Let me tell you how his face just f r o z e.
B: "Are they lost?" I go "Well yea, I can't find them. I think I used it on Monday but I don't know. Will you help me find them?" B's face is stuck, but he still doesn't want to give anything up so he decides to asks "Are they the one's that you used to clip my nails with?" At this point I just can't believe that his is playing it THIS cool. Now I still have to play it cool and keep going.
Finally B goes into the bathroom to get the tweezers (I have placed them back in the bathroom in plain sight) and he faintly says "I found them"
Me: " Oh yea, Bring them here"
Before he does that, he peaks out the bathroom and goes " Are they the ones with like a flat tip and and like a pointy side" In his animated, stuttery voice, as he always does and then lets me know they are in the bathroom.
Me: " Bring them to me"
The moment he has been dreading finally arrives. B has to give them to me now at this point. He has admitted he found them and I am requesting them. As he walks, very slowly to me, he stops at the doorway and just extends the tweezer, an arms length away from himself to my direction. So I mirror his behavior, and I also extend my open hand, palm up in his direction, signaling that I want them handed to me. As he walks to me, it's go time. Right before I get them. Mind you the burnt side is hidden in in hand, closed fist.
Now the time for the truth has arrived! We can no longer dance around this tweezer.
Braiden immediately says, " You know when the power went out a spark just jumped out and burnt the sides" My eyes open and I repeat what I understood and go " Soo you are telling me that a spark just flew out of the outlet and hit the tweezer?" After repeating myself Braiden realizes how CRAZY that sounded and starts to slowly break down. He starts his ugly cry face and says while making his way to the floor " You promise you won't get mad at me. If I tell you the truth will you get the belt?"
I just stare...silently. Now the truth...with a little of B's jazz, comes out. Through tears B starts to explain
"I am sorry. It's my fault. I didn't know what would happen. I was just being curious. I didn't know that would happen. I am soo sorry, I did it for SCIENCE"
This kid is a Genius. He is a future Academy Award winner. He pulls out the STEM card. Well played Braiden. Well played As he is boo hoo'ing. I am still silent. I know there's more. Braiden continues " Can you forgive me? I know you won't forgive me" Now I'm confused because I am fairly certain I never said that so I verify if I said anything along those lines. B: "No of course. He then says I didn't think you would forgive me. I damaged something you need and it's my fault." Ahhhh....the secrets, the production, it makes sense now. I now explain to my precious scientist-in-training Mom: "Braiden, I can buy another tweezer. I can't buy another Braiden. Of course I will always forgive you, but you need to know something. You could have killed yourself in the bathroom."
He just looked up at me, stunned. I don't think he ever considered that as a possibility. I continue " You could have seriously harmed yourself. Now that I think about it, you did this while you were in the shower. You were wet." Now I need to ask, if he did shock himself. He says no, relieved almost. " No I didn't harm myself" Now the sentencing because while I assured him that he is forgiven, the consequences for lying and the production of the lie must be answered. I explain to Braiden that from this point on its Guantanamo. First, no tablet, TV, laptop until I say so. I see a piece of him shatter.
Your need for privacy... Gone! You don't get to lock any doors in my house. The fracture continues further up his face. Then I call him out on how he avoided coming back downstairs the other day because he didn't want to answer my questions. I explain with that being said. I need you to read four chapters and I want illustrations for what's going on. By the end of today.. More tears. " But I'm not a good drawer" Frustrated I go.. " ANOTHER LIE...I am not asking for a museum masterpiece, but this is the work. so get to it."
I wrote this story on Nov 6, 2017. B was 7 going on 8 at the time. B is still very much an avid Scientist and we encourage SAFE experimentation. I've been weary to share this story because of how much parenting has changed. I'm not a perfect parent and my style has evolved over the years and still growing. This was a reaction that definitely came before conscious parenting.