So, I didn’t really teach any of my children to lie. I mean, what mother would do such a thing on purpose? And yet, because kids will be kids, they've all figured out what it is to tell a tall tale. All lies, however, are not created equal.
My oldest, for example, is hands down, the worst liar I have ever known. He turns bright red and a sheepish grin inches over his face, while he nods his head excessively. As soon as you call him on it, which isn't hard to do when he gives so many obvious clues, he caves. "Okay, you're right. I did it!"
Child number 2, on the other hand has no problem telling a lie. The only trouble for her is that she doesn't ever temper the outrageousness of her claims. She's just as easily caught as her brother. Try as she might to convince me, I’m not prone to believe that she cannot find her shoes because an alien spaceship flew into her room and took them right off her feet and there just wasn’t anything she could do about it.
And then there’s kid number 3. He's the one I worry about. He's good – convincing, realistic, and totally unfazed by the process of creating a lie. I do have one way though, of trapping him. So far, it's worked every time.
Me: "Sam? Did you brush your teeth?"
Sam: "Yep, I sure did."
Me: "Are you sure?"
Sam: "Yes, Mommy. I got my toothbrush wet, and brush, brush, brushed, and then rinsed it off. I even tried really hard not to get toothpaste on my shirt. Then I wiped my face on the blue towel hanging on the back of the door."
(I told you he was good… who lies with that kind of detail?)
Me: "Can I go and check your toothbrush to see if it's wet?"
Sam: "Mommy!? I can't believe you. Don't you trust me?!"
Hmmm. Seems like he's got me now, right? So I say:
"Turn around and tell that picture of Jesus that you brushed your teeth. And then I'll trust you."
Heh, heh, heh.
There is no lack of effort when Sam is challenged in this way. He turns and stares, hands on hips and face set in a determined scowl. But he always caves.
I'm strangely comforted that even though he doesn't hesitate when lying to me, he has yet to manage a lie to Jesus.
MommyJ is an aspiring writer and stay at home Mom to four children, (with number five on the way) including a vibrantly active set of 6 year old twins. She lives with her children and husband of nine years in a tiny town in the beautiful mountains of Western North Carolina - a place she considers the loveliest on earth. While she mourns the absence of any shopping options beyond Wal-Mart, she loves the presence of so many trees to help buffer the constant noisyness of her home. She hikes to enjoy time with her family, runs because her love for food requires it, writes to maintain her sanity and blogs as often as her crazy children and busy schedule allow on her personal blog, www.mommysnark.blogspot.com