The kids have earned dish duty. They all have kitchen chores but a few days ago they earned the privilege of washing the dishes as well. After lunch the other day, as I was dividing up the dish duties one of my precious children, who shall remain nameless, decided they did not like the task I assigned to them. They began to grumble and complain. Debates and arguments spewed forth to the point that this one sweet child of mine earned ALL the dish duties and the other two siblings were dismissed from the room. Get the picture...feel the mood in the house...?
An hour later the dishes were finally washed, the other siblings re-emerged and school work resumed. Some time later one of my other children went to fill up their water bottle only to notice that it filled up with suds instead. Sabotage flashed through my head. Of course, my victimized child had no clue and had only innocent feelings towards their dish-washing sibling. We rinsed the cup out, filled it with water, and sat down to do some work and have a drink. Coincidence, fate, or for-whatever-reason after taking a sip of water my victimized child began to clutch their throat. Ug! Something wasn't right. After another sip, again more throat clutching. Ok..soap is not poison and we did rinse it out really good, but the kid was having some problems. I gave my poor child my cup of water and ventured a sip from their cup - no taste, no throat discomfort but hey...?!
When my "saboteur" came into the room, I quietly asked them if they had intentionally left soap in their sibling's water bottle. "Oh,,,no," they replied. Somehow, I didn't believe them. The alleged saboteur sat at the kitchen counter while the victimized sibling continued to have problems only now it was stomach cramps. Before long the poor, stomach-cramped, victimized sibling was in the bathroom retching and moaning. I quietly stood in the kitchen watching the alleged saboteur become quieter and quieter. Before I knew it a confession came pouring out. I suggested they get their poor, sick, victimized sibling a dose of Pepto-Bismol which they gladly did. Once the poor, victimized sibling emerged from the bathroom the guilty-one, with tears, and pure repentance revealed their crime and asked for forgiveness.
What amazed me was how little I had to get involved but sat back and watched this whole tale unfold. I, of course, did talk to the guilty-one about the worst case scenario and if they had thought about the damage they could have done just because they did not want to wash the dishes. I have noticed a humbler child in my presence since the event occurred and feel they have definitely learned their lesson.
Truth be told, I don't think that there was any soap residue left in the cup (we did rinse it out very well.) but it seemed as if a stomach cramp from being really hot and drinking water too fast may have come at just the right time to teach someone a lesson.