My son came home from school with the exciting news that Microsoft released Disney Xfinity for Xbox One (which I later found out wasn’t even true) only to do a complete 180 when he realized we weren’t going to rush off to the store and buy it.
“I’m so disappointed,” he announced.
“Disappointment is a part of life,” I replied.
As you can guess, this did not improve his mood.
My other son got off the bus rather excited, no homework, it’s Passover, he informed me as if, duh! How could you forget? But we’re not Jewish, I told him. Much like St. Patty’s Day, everyone’s Jewish on Passover, especially if it means no homework.
I began cleaning and so didn’t hear the phone ring. When I played the message it was my oldest, who was at our neighbor’s, asking if he could have a cookie. He read the ingredients and “blah, blah, blah, no nuts,” these were his words. I did not call him back, for two reasons. First of all, he could have walked home in two minutes and asked me in person and, second of all, we have a basic rule that we insist he adhere to, if he doesn’t have his epi-pen, he doesn’t eat, especially cookies with ingredients like blah, blah, blah. So, unless he actually walked home and got the epi-pen, he already knew the answer, ergo, no need to ask the question.
Then, my daughter wanted to play on my lap top, but because I would not deliver it up to her on a silver platter, she started throwing, yet, another fit, banged all the keys and lost said laptop, which, you guessed it, threw her into an even bigger fit. She went upstairs and ripped the covers off of her bed (which I didn’t discover until five minutes before bed) and didn’t come downstairs until she heard the tink, tink, tinkling of Mr. Softee. Seriously, does Mr. Softee, really need to make his rounds before dinner.
She asked for ice-cream. I said, no. You guessed it, she threw another fit.She sat outside, eyeing up the older neighborhood girls who were waiting patiently for the ice cream truck, wanting to go play with them, but feeling ever so slighted because she hadn’t been invited in the first place, plus, she was not getting ice-cream and they were. It’s bad enough being the odd man out, but being the odd man out without ice-cream, unacceptable.
And, then, as if things weren’t going bad enough, my boys came home, one by way of the front yard yelling out to my daughter, who was now sitting on the curb listening longingly to the ice cream man’s jingle, that he had already had ice-cream, causing my daughter to come running inside just in time to see her other brother walk through the back door with a half-eaten cone. This was enough to throw her (and me) into a rage.
I laid into them.
First, my son broke the most important aforementioned rule. He is never to eat without having his epi-pen. The fact that he called me about a cookie, but felt free to eat ice cream sans epi-pen sent me into a tizzy. Second, my boys took money from a neighborhood mom to buy ice cream, when we live two minutes away on the next block. Seriously, have they no shame? In case the answer wasn’t obvious, they do not.
They did something they knew I wouldn’t want them to do, took money from someone, bought ice cream, and ate said ice cream five minutes before dinner, because both of them knew if they walked home and asked their mother, the answer would have been no.
Strangely, my diatribe quelled my daughter’s rage. It was as if she took pleasure in the fact that the boys were getting reprimanded.
And, of course, my sons did not eat their dinner, though they made a good show of it, fearing another mommy meltdown if they told me they were full, which just meant everyone wanted a second dinner after practice, which meant more for me to clean.
We rushed off to practices and lessons and returned all the more weary and on edge (at least, I did). I wish I could say the night got better, but it didn’t.
I guess some days are just like this, but that’s ok, because I’ve decided that parenting is more like a marathon than a sprint, there are good legs and bad legs, times you want to stop and cry, and times you feel like you’re in the groove. It’s humbling, exhausting, exhilarating, passion and love filled, even on the worst of days, and something that makes me very proud.
Parenting is not for sissies.