Monday, April 11, 2011

Repentant Kolby

Kolby is an amazing kid.  He makes you laugh with his awesome facial manipulations and sound effects.  He makes you smile when you want to be stern with him.  He has endless energy.  He likes to pretend that his dinner is not what I put before him, but instead is bulging with bugs and creepy crawly things.  "Now I'm gonna chomp the head off of this scorpion and eat it's body...but not the stinger!" he says, as he grabs a piece of chicken and bites into it.

Kolby would be happy if he could play wii or computer games all day long.  He would be happy if he could eat candy, sugar, cookies or nachos all day long, washed down with juice, with a lollipop chaser.  He would be happy if he never had to change his underwear, brush his teeth, shower, wash his hands, or read a book. 

Kolby is beyond adorable and charming and sweet and happy, but he is also my most challenging child.  The biggest battle I have with Kolby (besides schoolwork), is keeping him from sneaking food, gum, treats, and anything else he can find.  Kolby isn't really trying to be deceiving.  He'll  often leave the packaging in plain sight.  He's not trying to hide what he does.  He just really wants what he wants and doesn't care about the punishment.

However, when confronted, he will try to lie his way out of anything.  Usually, when I give him a punishment, he throws his little fit and declares his life unfair.  He hates being grounded from things, or excluded to his bedroom while the other kids get to watch a movie.   But would he ever show remorse?  Absolutely not.  He'll begrudgingly say he is sorry, but only if we make him.  He'll serve his punishment, but only because we force it upon him.  He is never sorry that he stole.  Only that we punished him for it.

Until this weekend.

I asked Kolby to get my chapstic from my purse (because my lips hurt real bad!) and it took a lot longer than it should have.  Finally, when he brought it to me, I could tell that he had something else in his hand.  He ran off to go to his room, but I stopped him and made him come back.  At that point, his hands were empty, and I asked him what he had taken.  "Nothing!"  he said, with open palms proclaiming his innocence.  I knew better.  I went around the corner, and there, on the floor, were three little mints that I had gotten from a restaurant, and had planned to give to the kids at church the following day.

I immediately sent him to his room for the night, and told him I'd have a punishment for him.  I was beyond upset at him for stealing, when we have tried so hard to teach him that it is wrong.

The other kids started watching the movie I had promised them they could watch, and Kolby sat on his bed, with the door closed.  After about half an hour, I was just about ready to have Kolby come out and start writing sentences, something to the effect of "I will not steal. I will not lie." about 500 thousand times, when Kolby came out of his room, walked up to me, and asked me for a pencil and a pen.

A few minutes later, Kolby presented this letter to me.

It says "I am sorry that I tried to steal from your purse.  Here is my dollar.  Sorry.  For mom."  First of all, even though there are a lot of misspelled words, I am proud that he wrote the words that he didn't know.  It shows he was writing with his feelings.  Second, I did not ask him to do this. He did it on his own.  This showed me that he was sorry, not because I told him to be sorry, but because he WAS sorry.  Third, he stapled his dollar bill onto the letter.  This is his only money.  He would never willingly give up his money.  It showed me he was serious.  He was trading in his money, for the three mints he tried to steal.  He was trying to make amends.

I accepted his apology with a hug and a kiss.  I sure love this willful boy of mine!


Julia said...

I have tears in my eyes. what a great lesson for Kolby and for mom. Sometimes the guilt just gets to them before you get there.

runningfan said...

Amazing! I remember when Zach did something similar, around the same age. I will never throw away that letter!

Heath said...

Dad loves you too my little Kolby. Even though you mess up and get punished I always hug you and let you know I love you, then you go back to being punished which needs to be done. I want to always be able to to give you a hug and tell you I love you throught your life, even if we are both old men.
Love Dad.

mickey said...

You're doing a good job, Mama.

Maynards said...

Such a sweet story and note. These moments are what it is all about.

Jeff and Lori said...

What a great story! Good job, Kolby and good job Shaina!

Colleen said...

Sweet! I love those moments, they are precious.