I receive this compliment quite often. Our traveling lifestyle has us out in public a little more often than I would like, but usually the situation begins in a public dining room:
“Your children sit so well! My children cannot sit still. YOU ARE SO LUCKY!”
Another repeated conversation goes like this:
“Wow! He came when you called him (in reference to a one year old), my children do not even hear me when I yell their name!” The commentators usually laugh at their own comments on how they must call for their children a dozen times. I laugh with them because its polite and agree that I am very fortunate.
My children were NOT born this way!
I do not tell this to parents ever because it would rude, but to assume my children were born perfect little angels and that our job as parents is easier is insulting! I have a 2 1/2 year old, and a 13 month old and they were born human just like all of us.
Whiny, wiggle-y, impatient, self-centered, demanding children just like the rest of them.
I’m not being ugly, its the way we all are. The Bible calls us all sinners (Romans 3:23), the difference is that I have learned (or rather am learning) what areas in my children’s life need developing. And then I WORK for what I want.
If I want my daughter to come when I call her, I practice it at home. Sound crazy? But it works, so I don’t mind. I begin the practice by asking her in a NORMAL talking voice, “Sissy, please come to Mommy.” And we repeat, and repeat, and repeat until she learns to come the first time I call (using a normal voice is so very important!).
We have also practiced “Please sit down,” “Can Mommy have it please?” “Go to Daddy please,” and ever so important, “Do not touch,” and “Hold Mommy’s hand please.” I say please a LOT :)
Anything I want my children to do in public, they must also do at home. When you train a child to hear and obey your normal talking voice at home life is MUCH easier in public. My children do have some bad episodes but they are rare because they understand what I expect from them.