Today after Noah's class he didn't come to me like he usually does, so I was looking around for him as I spoke with another mom.
In the mirror I saw him in the little alcove by the front door, where they have a cooler full of water and Gatorade type drinks that they sell for a dollar.
Noah was crouched down in front of it with the door open. I watch as he closes the door and picks up his shoes. I'm curious, but don't see him with a water bottle in hand.
I say his name.
He freezes, then dives into the corner to hide behind a shelving rack. A few seconds later he pops his head up and looks around. For the life of him he can't figure out how I can see what he is doing.
So he crouches down again and I see the refrigerator door open. I see his hands go in, and his head, but can't quite see what he is doing.
Again, I say his name.
Again, he freezes, and dives into the corner. He looks around. He knows I am still in the same spot. He still can't figure out how I know!
He walks over to me and I asked him if he was drinking the water. Hoping he isn't stupid enough to say no, considering there is a red ring around his mouth from the red sports drink he was sneaking.
This time he was honest. I think he knew I could see, even if he wasn't sure quite how that was happening.
He tried to tell me he put a dollar in the can, but couldn't quite come up with how the dollar came into his possession other than some lame excuse about it jumping into his pocket.
His response? Well, I did it last week and no one stopped me.
I removed the half empty bottle of water from the fridge and threw it away. Noah and I had a long talk on the way home about stealing and how what he was doing was stealing from his karate teacher, someone he respects, and that made it even worse.
He couldn't quite get past the fact that he did it before and didn't get in trouble, so why is he getting in trouble now?
I also tried to explain that it upset me even more because he tried to lie to me about it, and to top it off, he chose a red drink, knowing he can't have red food dye.
So I had to give him the "I'm disappointed that you put something in your body that you know does bad things to your brain" bit.
When we got home he had to write an apology note to the instructor and offer to help him do something in the studio to make up for the water/drinks that he stole.
I don't know if this is the right response, but it was all I could come up with today.
I know I have been gone for a long time. I hope to make that up to all of you soon. I do have much to tell you, but some of it is difficult and that is what is holding me back. Soon, very soon I will be back here on a more regularly irregular schedule. Miss you!