My wife tells me sometimes about friends of hers who post to Facebook about how they have “surprised” their children with a trip to Disney World, the morning they are going. Most of this is a lament about how we really can’t do that to to the Monster… both because of how it would backfire in terms of his schedule, and because of his not really being in a place where the surprise would mean anything to him.
No. I’m more fixed on lots of advanced warning, so he knows what’s going on.
Granted, most of the time, it’s not for the concern of a negative reaction as much as wanting him to be built up for a positive reaction to whatever it is.
For instance, this Sunday, the wife is doing this massive yard-sale thing to clear out some of her storehouse from the basement. That alone wouldn’t really require any kind of preparations, since I’ll largely be inside with the kids to keep them out of trouble, and then taking the Monster to Sunday Funday in the middle.
Except that there’s going to be a lot of people over, inside the house.
Her best friend’s family is coming over, which adds three more children and another two adults to the mix (the dads and boys are going to be inside largely, keeping the peace). And this morning, my wife let me know that her sister’s family is probably going to be coming too (another two adults and child).
So this afternoon, while driving over to gymnastics, I started getting him ready for the people who are coming this weekend, asking him if he wants to see them, etc. The idea is to – hopefully – have him ready for them to arrive on Sunday, to be ready to say hello and be moderately social… and we’ll build from there. My major want for Sunday is just for him to be calm enough that it’s not a fight and tussle to get him into the car for Sunday Funday, mostly so he doesn’t make a scene in front of the folks shopping at the yard sale (and have them wonder what’s wrong with us).
Like most things, I’m sure that I’m worried for nothing, but it would be nice to see him get excited for something in advance for once.