Ever feel like your life is an afterschool special? This morning, I had to bring Holly to CCE with Ben and me as Steve wasn't home. In CCE we discussed moral decisions and temptation. LITERALLY as we come to the part talking about what it means to be tempted and how we have a choice on how to react, Holly was there doing an excellent job of exemplifying temptation by distracting her brother with the game she was playing on my phone, and he took the bait: lock, stock, and barrel. I ended up separating them resulting in much contempt (and embarrassment) from Ben. He felt he was being wrongly called out because of something his sister was doing!
After class, after spending the remainder of the class time with his head on the table, I asked him what part he had in the entire situation. Time after time he pointed out what his sister did. Acknowledging that his sister also didn't make peaceful choices, my focus was currently on his actions; time after time I asked him how HE contributed to the situation, having no control over what his sister did. Again and again and again, he tried to pin his behavior on his sister's actions. So, finally, I said when we got home I wanted him to write down his part in the situation and not to mention his sister's actions at all. I'm tired of hearing one more person blame their actions on someone else's actions - bottom line, he made a choice!
I really didn't expect much as he seemed pretty hell-bent on blaming his sister for everything he was feeling. Not a word was spoken on the way home. Upon arrival, he jumped out of the car to go in the house. I got out and reached out to give him the keys but when he came back he ignored the keys and, crying, gave me a big hug! My 10 year old boy doesn't give hugs!! He went upstairs immediately and came down with a note shortly after that said the following:
"I am sorry for interrupting your class and being an idiot. I will try to never do that again. I didn't listen to you and I was mean to Holly. Next time I will listen more and pay less attention to my surroundings. I wasn't taking care for my actions. Now I suffer the consequences. Here I am.
I know it's a small thing but I can't remember being more proud of him for being accountable for his actions. He recognized his part in the whole scenario and what to practice (well, at least he will try!) to avoid it in the future. I felt like I saw his spirit grow today. The more accountable for our actions, the more peace we will find in the world. There was peace in our land, at least for a little while, and it was good!