I ‘ve been trying to give our oldest dd “Contessa” some time exploring in the kitchen. She is always asking to bake something, make something, or cook something. It’s hard to step back and let her learn from mistakes. Well, today was one of those “learning” experiences….
We have been wanting to make homemade bread.. yes with yeast and all.. (very easy for me to mess up) I’ve been waiting for just the right time for the mess that bread making brings. Out come all of the ingredients… yeast set aside to rise.. all looks good. Contessa has been asking to help and on occasion I let her take things out of the oven (usually cookies she has made) She has to learn sometime…and she is 10. I was busy changing the baby and she was impatient waiting for me to get the bread out..timer beeping over and over and over…etc..
“Mom, can I please take the bread out of the oven?” (it was baking on a cookie sheet) I just looked at her with that mommy face and said (trying to let her have some freedom of feeling accomplished) “Okay, but Do not burn yourself, and wear oven mitts.” “Oh I will mom, Thanks” … and that was all I heard… I figured bread was out safe so no need to rush.
About 5 minutes later, the baby and I came downstairs. Dd was walking out of the bathroom with a wet paper towel and I hear ” Mom, I burned myself, right here and here.” ( forearm/line burn and palm of left hand/line burn) My face dropped, “Oh honey, how did you do that? Did you wear and Oven mitt?” “Yes mom I promise!”…. “Mom???”…. “I Promise I did!” ( panic is setting in and the cottonball lie and rolling into a snowball… The longer she kept it up, the bigger the ball…Obviously, any mom knows from her own burns, this was no oven mitt burn, she HAD to have touched the pan with her non-dominant hand. I questioned and asked her again.. nothing… Sooooooo.. here comes the lesson about what a lie no matter how little can just get harder and harder to get out of. Of course I told her how she is in more trouble for covering up the truth than she would have been just telling me something like, “Mom, I tried to blah blah blah…” and I would have said something along the lines of “Oh I am so sorry….” I told her I knew that she wasn’t telling me something because I could tell by the burn it would not have done that through a mitt. Please know that No 10 year old has an easy time admitting the truth after they have a said a snowfall worth of untruth. She started to cry and through the rainfall of sorrow, I just held her in my arms….( I started to smile because I am thinking I broke through and now she understands how a lie just gets worse and its better to tell the truth) ….and through her tears, she admits that she burned herself to try to save the bread… The pan was too heavy with the hot loaf of bread and her weak right arm gave way causing the pan to drop to the ground. In her moment of panic and disbelief she realized this bread she and I worked hard to make and were just about to enjoy for lunch was in route for the ground… (remember we have a black lab ((smile)))
Well the snowball continued to melt and through the tears I can hear ” …so I burned my hand trying to catch the bread and you all were going to eat the bread and its been on the floor and I didn’t want to tell you and I…” Poor thing, lesson learned.. the hard way…my smile became more of a chuckle as I held her longer. I think she was more devestated that we were all going to eat the bread if she hadn’t spoken up. She could barely eat lunch after that..
Another homeschooling moment for mom….Homeschooling isn’t just about books and academics.. its about values and more. Today we learned (the hard way) how we can feel trapped in a lie and it hurts.. today, unfortunately, it was literal.
Now that a few hours have past, she is better and has a small blister in the palm of her hand. her arm may always have a line on it though. Maybe it will always remind her to tell the truth.
A good friend once told me right before I began my homeschooling journey… “We are here to raise saints, not scholars.” I like to remember that. (Thanks MA)