Remember back before you were a parent, when you thought you knew it all? Boy those were simple days. So easy to judge. So easy to know EXACTLY what the right thing to do would be.
Well, Jack has learned an unfortunate word that rhymes with duck. Luckily, it starts with an "s" and not an "f," although I am sure that one is coming soon. I heard him say it once today. "The Cowboys suck." Now Jack is the kind of kid you cannot give an inch to. So I told him firmly, clearly, and directly that we do not use that word. I gave him alternative words that might express the same thing. I also gave him the benefit of the doubt since it is the first time I've heard him use the word. But I told him very clearly that if he said that word again, I was going to put hot sauce on his tongue.
Apparently hot sauce is the modern day equivalent of soap, which is now looked at as cruel in parenting books. Before I had children if you told me that I would ever consider putting hot sauce on my son's tongue, I would have been horrified. HORRIFIED. What kind of parent would do that? Certainly a lazy parent who would prefer to inflict pain on her child than teach them properly.
Not 10 minutes later, he looked right at me with that Jack grin that is such trouble and so adorable and said, "The Cowboys suck." Before the words were even out of his mouth, he was running down the hall with glee to find Sam to tell him he was about to get hot sauce.
Now I must confess that I really never had the intention of putting hot sauce on his tongue. I was sure that the threat of it would be enough. And, as I learned a few minutes later, we don't even own hot sauce. But I knew that Jack was taunting me and I only had one choice.
As I am looking through my kitchen for something hot (with my neighbor Janet watching in amusement), Jack and Sam are standing in the kitchen literally jumping up and down with excitement. "Hot sauce, hot sauce, hot sauce!" they cry.
I finally settled on cayenne pepper. I licked my pinky, stuck it in the jar so that the pepper would stick to it and then stuck it in Jack's mouth.
The kid didn't even flinch, people. Didn't. Even. Flinch.
My white flag is raised.