Essential Takeaway: Use the mouth guard

I have mentioned before that my 12 year old son is trying out this wrestling thing. He is learning many valuable lessons because of this experience. He was unfortunate enough blessed to learn another life lesson the last few days. I have been nagging reminding as only a mother can that the man child needs to wear his mouth guard while wrestling. I do this because his braces are expensive and I don’t want to look like THAT mother going back into the orthodontist office like I have no idea how to care for my young.

Because the 12 year old is my 4th child, I think I’m getting this caring for the young thing down. I can nag with the best of them. The problem is once again, agency. The boy refuses to wear his mouth guard when wrestling. Saturday he had a competition and it seemed as if I had channeled my inner psychic. Shockingly, he broke 5 brackets during competition.

A good lesson of natural consequences was now in play. The boy had to go into the orthodontist today to get the brackets fixed. While I was mortified to be THAT mother in the office, I was grateful for natural consequences. The boy was uncomfortable even in a small amount of pain. He had to confess his disobedience. The boy had to sit in the chair for over an hour while repairs were made to “significant damage” as the orthodontist put it. I told the doc natural consequences were the words of the day today.

The doc said “today we will also learn about mercy and forgiveness.” An inspired orthodontist continued:”We can fix this. It won’t be easy, it will be painful, but we can fix this. You have significant damage. You have made a big mistake. Part of repentance is trying your best not to do this again. That is a simple thing in this case. Wear your mouth guard. It is that simple. Next time it will cost me and your mother more time and money.”

Not all natural consequences are brought upon us by our own doing. Today I wonder many are? How many things do we do or not do because we are being lazy, or are worried what others might think? The boy did not want the other kids to tease him about his mouth guard. I get it. Sometimes I don’t want people to tease me about my beliefs, standards, way of living or other choices I’ve made. When we ignore the guards or refuse the protection provided we are making pretty risky choices and eventually natural consequences catch up.

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