Wednesday, December 08, 2004

Crime and Punishment.

When Alex was in his early months of existence, everything he did was lauded as an accomplishment. We'd encourage him to bang things with his hammer, cheer him on when he could throw a toy, and beam with pride as he vocalized his feelings with bouts of random screaming. And for the most part, it's still very adorable to see his communication skills and expressive skills developing through these actions. However, as we surpass his 15-month marker, we're realizing that at some point, we're going to have to start the good old discipline. And we know it all goes downhill from now because we have a teenager with a lying compulsion.

For the most part, he has free rein of his terrority. Heck, the living room is basically his domain - it's like a second-hand toy store with furniture. Santa shops here for the kids. But there are some things that are starting to either be dangerous or just annoying. Dude, you can only turn off the TV for the 22nd time before I get a little miffed. And it's not like I'm watching the Spice Channel's special on "Pornstar Bloopers" or anything, he could be watching The Wiggles and he'd walk up to the telly and turn it off. And on. And off. Then the captions. Then the volume. I'm usually counteracting with the remote, but that only works for a while before I realize that because he's standing 2 inches from the TV, the infrared doesn't go through Alexes.

And he's into everything. He'll camp out in the fridge if he had the opportunity, emptying eggs, drinking ketchup, and pouring out the liquid specimens I have in there.

They're for research.

And we babyproof as much as we can, but I never realized how many dangerous things exist within children's grasp until now. He's proven that swinging doors can be hazardous, and I have to second guess the cheese grater now when he pulls it out of the drawer. What if he decides to run his tongue up and down it? Screw that, what if he enjoyed it?

Last night, when we were hanging out and he was leaning against my leg, he decided to fulfill his cannibalistic desires and chomped down on my knee. Of course, I didn't expect that since he wasn't even nibbling on it before. It was just like a sudden CHOMP. So I jumped and yelled, and my knee jerked him and he flailed about before landing on his side. And he bawled his heart out. I felt bad for scaring him, but told him not to bite people anymore. I'm sure he was listening.

We've talked about playpen timeouts, but it's still a little iffy if he understands cause and effect, action and consequence, or good and bad. Perhaps for now, I should put off the idea purchasing an electric cattle prod until I know that he understands the difference.

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