- Bye! I’m going to Bunica downstairs. Don’t come after me. I’ll return home at the perfect hour for lunch.
- Jackie, I have one request. No sweets today. Not even one bite. Yesterday you had chocolate and candy. Not one taste today.
- Ok. If Bunica offers, I’ll say “I’m not eating nothing!”
Off she goes and after an hour we go for a walk in a drizzle.
- Jackie, did you eat sweets at Bunica? (A sugary trace around her lips)
- She nods silently.
- What? I ask
- I don’t want to tell. She responds.
We walk in silence. I remind her the consequence of her not keeping her word. No more visits alone at Bunica this week. Because she lost my trust.
As we get home she starts whining. She wails. From her room she calls for me. Daddy goes in instead. She insists I go to her room.
So I go in and we talk about trust and consequences. We draw parallels with Adam, Eve and the apple conundrum.
She knows the story. But she says they didn’t die after eating the apple. I tell her that before the apple incident, people didn’t die of old age. Now people do die, of sickness, accidents or old age.
But what was worse was that God expelled them from the garden. They had to deal with the consequences of their disobedience.
I tell her she can regain my trust if she listens to me and heeds to my advice. For her own good.
Then she says:
- You must have some benefits too. You keep saying it’s for my own good. What is your benefit if I obey? She debates with astuteness.
- Well. Let’s take the sweets for example, I respond.
- When you don’t eat sweets all day, you don’t aggravate your teeth and you don’t get cavities. Your teeth don’t ache, and you don’t have to go to the dentist to get cavity fillings. These are your benefits. Mine are the fact that I don’t have to plead with you at the dentist to cooperate, and I don’t have to pay a lot of money for the dental work. You are right. There are always benefits for the parents as well.
- If you eat sweets all day you loose your appetite for regular healthy meals. Then you don’t develop strong and healthy on a sweets diet. Your benefit is being healthy, feeling strong, being able & having energy to study. My benefit is your health. Again, we don’t waste time and money at the doctor just because you don’t have a healthy eating habit.
- Hmmm. I see, she responds looking at me intently. OK then.