I don't think you will ever know if you are cut out to be a mother until some event takes place that is so far out of what you think can happen that you are in new territory.
We came home from school and things were fine. He wanted to do some crafts until his Dad came home- it was only about an hour until that happened. The dining room table is where we usually do our crafts-but currently it's full of Etsy items that haven't been put away (my bad). I told him he could work at his desk in the living room. He wanted glitter- but the living room is carpeted, so no glitter. But, I gave him construction paper, glue sticks, markers, scissors and crayons. I was on the computer in the next room (which is open to the living room) and he was in there for about 20 minutes.
Now, with the stage set, let me tell you what I found. He took after my CURTAINS with the SCISSORS. He managed to try to cut out shapes etc... in/on 3 curtains. The denim resisted his advances, but the white duck gave him what he wanted. It never had a chance.
He was silent but deadly. I was less than 15 ft from him and I never had a clue.
This is where I can tell you that I know now that I am firmly against corporal punishment. I thought I was before, but since he came out of this without even a spank on the butt, I know that that is how I feel.
So, how was he punished if I don't believe in spanking?
1. weekends are his cartoon time. He loves cartoons. He has no cartoons this weekend, and he knows that he brought this on himself. He hasn't even asked to see any.
2. No more arts/crafts anywhere but the main table with me around for a while. This upset him because he says he's a big boy. I said big boys don't cut up their mothers curtains. He loves art and I don't want him not to love it, so it's a fine line I have here.
3. I took all the money out of his piggy bank to pay for the curtains. I explained, and showed him, that he had enough money to buy a large Playmobil Egypt set. (he loves those things) I told him he had to buy me new curtains to replace the ones he cut up. I took 44.00 total from his piggy bank. We talked about how many rocks he picked up in the yard to get that money etc... it really got to him to see it all go away.
4. Lastly, he spent a lot of time talking to me about what the hell he was thinking. We discussed how things belong to people. That I really liked those curtains. I think that he understood what he did was wrong, and that sometimes just saying sorry isn't enough. I hope so at least. He was concerned that I was going to cut up something of his. We talked about how two wrongs don't make a right. That destroying something of his wasn't going to make what he did go away, or make it right.
I was so surprised that I was so calm. Surprised, but somewhat happy. My patience has been tested before with the kiddo, but I've been had my curtains cut to shreds by someone that I love, and it was interesting in hindsight to see my reaction to it.
I think this turned out to be a learning experience for both of us. I'm not going to say it was a good thing though.
It did get me to put up my winter curtains though....