I have been getting fatter and fatter lately, and it occurred to me last week, not for the first time, that if I ate the diet I (try to) enforce for my kids, I could probably lose five pounds. I would also feel less like a hypocrite, shooing the boys out of the kitchen so I can cram another handful of chocolate chips into my mouth.
Then I thought that if I consistently did all of the things that I urge my kids to do, I would eat healthier, sleep more, be kinder to everyone, and grow up.
When I began listing all of the behaviors and attitudes I demand of them, I realized why I'm such a hypocrite: no one can do and be all of those things, except maybe Jesus or the Buddha. But that doesn't mean we can't try. So I decided to try--really try--for thirty days to see how well I can live up to my impossible expectations for the boys. If I make it, I should be healthier and happier and closer to enlightenment, right? If I don't, well, I'll just lighten up on all of us.
So without further ado:
For thirty days henceforth, I will live like this:
1) I will eat all of my vegetables, always.
2) I will eat healthy snacks instead of junk food between meals.
3) I will eat only one cookie's worth of cookie dough when I'm baking.
4) I will go to bed at a reasonable hour.
5) I will tell the truth, even if it's not convenient for me.
6) I will not yell or be mean to others if I am angry. Instead, I will tell them what I'm feeling and what I want (or need or wish for), and work on a solution.
7) If someone hurts me or is mean to me, I will not hurt or be mean back.
8) If I hurt someone or make a mistake, I will apologize and try to fix things.
8) I will not whine about my problems; instead, I will try to solve them.
9) I will help whenever people need it (and sometimes when they don't).
10) I will put away my toys when I am finished with them.
11) I will pick up my clothes and put them in the laundry hamper or in my dresser.
12) I will finish my work before I play.
That's a lot. And that's just the stuff they hear every day (not to mention stuff I've already mastered, like "wash your hands" and "don't pick your nose.") Oh, my poor boys. No wonder they tune me out so often.