I like to talk. So not surprisingly, I’m currently raising three very opinionated verbal little beasts. My children talk constantly! And my poor husband! the introvert that he is, can’t quite escape the chatter. Ever. Until we discovered the “Quiet Hat”.
The #QuietHat was given to me on Paddy’s Day 2012, but because of its offensive size and ridiculousness, it never made it past our front door. It has, instead, become our Quiet Hat. And let me explain its magic.
Whenever I start to feel overwhelmed by the whys and the why nots and my #momrage starts to bubble inside of me and my eyelids turn red, instead of throwing my kids outside in January I simply put on my Quiet Hat and receive magical powers: the power NOT to talk:
Mommy I want another cracker! just stir your spaghetti sauce in peace, Jonna.
Mommy she ripped out my Barbie doll’s hair!! sip that sweet sweet caffeinated nectar and keep turning the pages of your magazine girl.
Its magic is pure brilliance!
The beauty behind the Hat is that it’s concrete sequential. So instead of saying “please be quiet” or “mommy needs to be silent now”, your kids can SEE for themselves what “quiet” actually means. The putting-on-of-the-hat registers to them that mama means business and they therefore know that you won’t be talking to them until the Hat comes off…which could be minutes, hours, or days. Your choice mama!
Of course I had to teach my kids what the Hat meant, and sure it took a few times, but they eventually understood what I needed: the space to be human and to take a time-out. Sometimes we mamas can find this solace in the bathroom after we’ve locked ourselves inside while weeping; other times we can find it in our closets while our children pound on the door screaming for chips; but rarely do we find these quiet moments alone. It’s just not in the cards when you’re raising hairy little beasties who “could eat you up they love you so!” #wherethewildthingsare. That’s why the Quiet Hat is amazing. It allows you to remain present for your children WHILE attending to your own needs!
Also, showing your children that you, too, need a time-out models to your kids how important it is for them to identify this need in themselves as well. My oldest and middle child will sometimes use the Quiet Hat when they’ve had enough of each other too, which is beautiful to see them execute because it actually works! They really do respect each other’s need for alone time.
So get yourself a Quiet Hat, mama. Maybe it won’t look like mine, but it should be half-way ridiculous, because the other part of its magic is the power to break fire with humor. Almost always after two-minutes of wearing it I catch a glimpse of myself in the mirror and laugh (because it really is obscene). And once I start laughing, I eventually take off the hat and give my kids a hug and what they really need and want: just one more massive dose of conversating with mom.
My middle child around 2 years of age wearing the #QuietHat!