Two weeks ago we went to a wedding where pretty much all of the Evangelical Christians in Athens were gathered. There were so many people there, and a lot of small children as well. Even though the ceremony was by no means long, Katienne (my 2 year old) was still getting really restless. It was getting to the point in the ceremony where the message was over and the bride and groom were about to say their precious wedding vows. At this point Kati started to sing a song very loudly.
So I did what any resourceful mom would do in such a moment, I reached into my bag and took out a candy to put in Kati’s mouth. It’s very difficult to disrupt an enchanted moment with loud singing or yelling when you have a candy in your mouth.
You all know that I do discipline my kids, and they don’t get away with whatever they want, but there are some circumstances when I feel ok “bribing” them, or anything else you want to call it. You can accuse me of rewarding bad behavior, but I don’t think it’s bad behavior for a 2 year old to get a bit squirmy after sitting for an hour and a half. That is normal and expected behavior for any small child, and we can’t hold it against them. We should have realistic expectations for our kids based on their age and personality. We all have limits, and kids have much shorter limits than adults.
So with that in mind, I always keep a piece of candy in my purse for such occasions. Sometimes you just need a few more minutes of complete silence, and popping a piece of yummy candy in their mouth will give you that. Of course, also make sure you have a tissue, wipe, or napkin in case they get a little sticky.
If you are opposed to giving your children unnecessary sugar, you can always go with a low sugar or grape sugar variety of candy. I keep grape sugar candies on hand. I also eat one myself once in a while, because they are yummy! They are made with naturally occurring sugar that is found in grapes. You can find them at most health food stores.
So those are my thoughts on having your kids with you when you need a few moments of quiet, whether at the doctor’s office, on an airplane, or at a wedding.