Lesson Learned

While we were on our camping trip we were getting ready to spend the day in the boat.
And a big part of getting ready for the beach or a boat trip is getting sunscreen on the kids.

They lined up and each took a turn getting sunscreen rubbed all over them and then it was the Oldest Island Boy's turn. He's big enough to put the sunscreen on most of his body but of course he can't do his back so I do that for him.

When it was his turn he didn't want any part of it. He wanted to run and play with some new friends he'd made in the park and after my calling him repeatedly he showed up with a really bad attitude.

He didn't want to put sunscreen on. Sunscreen is stupid and he wasn't going to need it, he said.

I argued with him for a minute and then got mad and told him to stand still so I could put the sunscreen on him.

He got mad too and stomped around for a minute, backtalking me the whole time. I was just getting ready to snatch a knot in his head when it occured to me that there was a better way to handle his bad attitude.

"Ok" I told him. "You know what's going to happen if you don't wear sunscreen and when it does I am not going to feel sorry for you at all. And any whining or complaining you do tonight because you're sunburned won't be tolerated."

He rolled his eyes at me and walked off.

We spent the day in the boat and I'll bet you can guess what happened that night.

Yep, the boy was sunburned.

I knew it would happen.

He knew it would happen.

That night he came up and gave me a hug and then told me that he was sorry that he'd acted ugly when I tried to put sunscreen on him and that I was right, it wouldn't have taken but a minute and it would have been so much better if he'd done it.

Sometimes he just has to learn things the hard way. He gets that from his mother.

He did learn though because Sunday morning he was first in the sunscreen line.