My boys knew for a fact that we dislike internal fighting. When they were younger and played well together, I would surprise them with new toys. Toys which they had received for their birthdays, unwrapped but kept aside as part of our delayed gratification parenting strategy.
Still, they were new toys.
One day, Z came to me.
Z: Mom, X has been a very good boy. He is proactive. He takes his own clothes out for shower and keeps the towel by himself. He also thinks win win because he just did something that is good for everyone.
Just as I was feeling impressed by how Z had picked up my lingo and a reiteration of what he learned in the school’s leadership subject, he continued,”How do you plan to reward X?”
Me: What would you suggest?
Z: How about letting him open a new toy like a box of LEGO?
I thought it was hilarious that my 7-year old had conducted his 3-year old brother’s performance appraisal. It was great that they are not fighting but were collaborating to open a new toy.
Unfortunately, as funny as it was, I told them I had to think about it and came up with some conditions to be met.
Surely, my sons were picking up my talk.