Spare The Paddle, Spoil The Lion

As you might have guessed from Mrs. Lion’s post yesterday, she’s frazzled. Her Job is difficult and highly detail-oriented. Their business software vendor has experienced a serious problem and she hasn’t had access to any of the records she needs for the last week. She’s doing the best she can under very difficult conditions.

She wrote that I didn’t get the coffee ready for Thursday morning. Actually, I did get set up and then we decided on a second pot Wednesday. I never got back to repeat the setup. When Mrs. Lion went to make breakfast, she had to get the pot ready. When she brought the tray in, she said that I wasn’t going to be punished for not setting up the coffee pot. My morning fuzzy brain eventually put the pieces together and I thanked her. Later, after reading her post, I realized that maybe she was being too nice.

She said that I had fulfilled my duty the first time I set up the pot. She had a point. I set it up expecting the next use would be on Thursday morning. Then, after thinking about it a bit, I wondered if maybe she was being too kind. Was this the same thing as excusing me for interrupting or annoying her because she wasn’t sure I was the root cause of her anger? I suppose that’s possible. Mrs. Lion is very kind. The last thing she wants to be is unfair to me. I am grateful for that and for the love she shows me.

Then, I realized that this situation wasn’t about being fair. It was about two completely different things: First, to our surprise, we’ve learned that consistent enforcement is an effective way to train me. I should have been trained well enough to set that coffee pot up 20 times in a day if that was what we needed. Second, we are out of practice again. Since the idea of maintenance spankings doesn’t work for us, any chance to punish me for a valid reason is valuable because it keeps both of us properly focused on our FLR.

I think this is especially important at times like this when Mrs. Lion is under so much stress. If nothing else, it is a distraction for her. It’s also an area of her life that she controls. Just my two cents.

Listen to this post.

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