My brother pointed this out as we strolled through Disney World: a child dropped a sippy cup out of his stroller.
Four moms in the surrounding area spotted it and said, "Uh oh!"
(I was one of them.)
Rob said, "All the moms say Uh Oh. All of them."
It seems we also say:
"That is not okay."
- As in, "Do not hit your sister. That is not okay." "Do not eat that jolly rancher off the floor. That is not okay." "What did I tell you? That is not okay."
"Do you need a time out?"
- We offer this question as if it's rhetorical. As if this is a democracy. And in some parenting books, I suppose all of this is one big democratic convention of toddlers. We offer this as an option, as if someday one of ours will say, "Yes, yes, I believe I do. I'm a little irrational and whiny."
In general, the phrase "right now." We tack it on to the end of many declarative statements.
- "I need you to listen right now." "Here's what I'm thinking right now." In-the-moment declarations? A big deal to us, so it seems.
"Make a good choice."
- The ever empowering choice between two options. "Do you want to wear the red shirt of the blue shirt?" "Do you want to whisper or talk quietly?" "Do you want to hand me that expensive item or get a spanking?" Always choices; I place before you two. Be wise, young mosquito.
We seem to be a generation of momma birds who value clarity, repetition, independence, decision making, and above all else, punctuality.
"Uh Oh, that is not a good choice. Do you need a time out right now?"
I say this roughly 87 times a day.
It leaves me wondering what my children hear most, if they're really, truly listening.