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why we stayed home today

Harvey is going through a phase where it's hard for me to get him out of the house. Two weeks ago he LOVED going to the supermarket, but now it seems he can't be budged. He says, "Can't I just play here for a while?" and when that doesn't work he says, "I'M. NOT. GOING!"

I asked him this morning if he'd like to go to Market Basket and Joanne's. As a counter offer he said he'd deign to visit the museum. The one with balls. I said yes we'll definitely go to the museum Thursday or Friday but can we please go out on errands today? Harvey stamps his foot. I'M. NOT. GOING.

I could throw him in the car by force or bribe him with chocolate, but I don't think that's great parenting either.

Instead I'm calling this a phase and hoping it passes in a week or so. He went through a time at 18 months when it was hard to get him to do anything. We got in a lot of useless fights me trying to drag him to story-time. Then I decided that was ridiculous. Calm down and let him grow out of his crippling social anxiety. And he did, for the most part, so when it flares up again I'm trying not to be too concerned. Also he's going pee every 30 minutes. That may be a factor. But he says it doesn't hurt when he pees, and if his penis hurt I'm sure it's something I would hear about. So. Trying to be chill about staying in the house for long periods of time.

Perhaps I'm not chill enough. Perhaps I'm putting too much pressure on him. Because this morning I was singing Lord of the Dance:

I danced for the scribes and the Pharisees but they wouldn't dance and they would not follow me...

when Harvey interjected: "Maybe they didn't follow Jesus because they wanted to stay home."


"Maybe they wanted a day at home" he clarified.

My heart just broke into a million pieces. "No sweetie," I said, "the Pharisees didn't follow Jesus because they didn't want justice or equality. They wanted to hold onto their power. It had nothing to do with wanting to stay home. Staying home or going out has nothing to do with following Jesus."

Harvey looked at me blankly. And vulnerably and impressionably.

"Do you want to just stay home today, sweetie?"

Harvey nods his head.

"You can stay home and still follow Jesus, sweetheart. That has nothing to do with whether you go out."

"Okay" Harvey says, giggling. I don't know what he understands of anything, but he's happy I'm no longer asking him every half hour if he's SURE he doesn't want to go in the car to the store.

Look, playing in the house all day is not my cup of tea. I get really really bored looking around at more and more things that need my cleaning. BUT. That's just my preference. I wonder how many other things that are just PREFERENCES I'm trying to force on my kids like they're RELIGION. To say the thought makes me nervous is an understatement. It makes me downright terrified.

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