When I became a parent I was determined to be a perfect parent. Or least a better parent than mine. I began to read all the books by pastors and Christian psychologists to help make me a better parent. But you know what it boils down to: You pour the kerosene, I'll light the match. Those books can be relatively useless unless you can get your kids to read them, so they know the way they are supposed to react when you use those innovative methods of parenting.
This morning Katie and I went through a moment in which I would be disqualified as Parent of the Year. Everything was fine until I asked her to put on her shoes and socks. She started through the process amiably enough but was having problems with the shoes and began to whine and cry. Not my favorite characteristic of hers. And it was no wonder the shoes are a year old and too small for her feet with socks. And since it was cold outside there was no way she was going out without socks.
I began to help her with these despicable shoes and could not make it any better. And she whined and cried and whined and cried. Finally I had enough, I grabbed her, ready to spank her and I stopped. Never when I'm angry. Instead I grabbed those evil shoes and threw them into the garbage.
She was crying still but now she wasn't whining. I put on her tennis shoes. We got in the car and I dropped them off at the baby sitters. I hugged and kissed her good by. I got back into car hoping that little ball that was sitting in the center of my heart would move soon. It's going to be a long day.