Okay, I have been talking, John has been nodding in agreement. He is a wise man who will not disagree unless someone's life is in danger, it is going to cost a ton of money, or he is going to be required to exert superhuman strength in completing the task.
Our problem at hand is that we have three children. Giggle if you must, but it presents a myriad of issues when trying to house said children and their stuff in our humble abode. In my thinking, it is easier to throw out stuff and rearrange the home we currently have than to try to sell it, pack up all our stuff and try to find something within our price range. Also, did I mention that I have 8 years left on my mortgage. Yeah, I ain't moving.
Luckily, we have enough rooms for each of the boys to have their own room. I am against it. My sister and I shared a room, and although there were times when we fought like cats and dogs, there was something very comforting about being able to talk with someone until you drifted to sleep. The boys have shared a room since it was feasible to do so. Joshua joined them almost two years ago, and it is sweet to hear them talk to each other. However, I cannot squeeze three twin sized beds into that room. The bunk beds have been useful, but there is no way on Earth I will be able to put another bed in there.
So, after much thought and deliberation, I decided that Matthew will get to have his own room, and Andrew and Joshua will share the room they all sleep in now. Before you start to complain about Andrew getting the short end of the stick, he will be providing creative input to his room AND the boy cave(AKA playroom) that John and I will create for them. Pretty sweet deal for the two older ones, no? Too bad for Joshua. If he wanted input, he needs to potty in the toilet. Consistently.
My relaxing weekend was spent arranging and rearranging furniture in my head, budgeting the amount of money I am willing to spend on all three rooms, and lugging children to the Mecca of cheap furniture: IKEA. Because I am pretty much a miser when I know whatever I bring home will be trashed by the termites disguised as the children I birthed.
The most interesting thing about this whole thing has been the reaction of my two older boys. They were both pretty much in awe that I was willing to split them, although I am not happy about it. Andrew was so excited to have a say in the whole affair and not to have had to whine to get the opportunity to say what he thinks. Matthew feels like a big boy in that he will have his own space.
But the most surprising change is within me. That I am willing to go out on this limb which makes me so uncomfortable.
After reading all those Five for Ten entries on Yes, I have a newfound respect for it. For how it makes me feel. For the joy it brings my boys. For the empowerment it brings to all involved: those who say it, those it affects.
There are so many times that I say no; out of habit or fear. Matthew will turn 10 this fall. He really wanted a cell phone. He really wanted an iTouch. Not happening.
But this unsolicited yes has brought empowerment.
For Matthew, it will mean having his own space that he gets to decorate (with EXTENSIVE help from the resident interior designer, Mom). It will become his haven. Everyone needs one of those. It was a compromise that we both could live with, even though he had no idea that this would be my counter-offer to his electronic dreams.
For Andrew, he will get to decide and be listened to . He will also become the older brother in a room. He will be able to see his ideas come to fruition. Everyone needs to see that when they are young. Although it is unsettling to him to get the top bunk, it will be something to prove to himself. The reward will be to enjoy moving up the ladder, and enjoying the shared space he will help create for himself and his brothers.
For Joshua, although he is too young, he will learn that everyone in this house has a voice worth listening to. As he gets older, he will internalize how each member of this family has the responsibility to listen to others and value the opinions of others. He will learn the art of compromise.
For me, it means letting go of the nursery that my sister so lovingly decorated for my first born son.
(Middle Nutbrown Hare shown here, circa 2004)
It is time to see Little Nutbrown Hare go.
Because Big Nutbrown Hare is on his way...
And the change is good.