I’m in this weird stage of parenting where my kids physically need me less, but they’re basically emotional dumpster fires that I have to manage or the whole town will be ablaze. My ten-year-old has finally submitted to the fact that the world does not revolve around him, though anxiety seems to have replaced the angry aggression of last year. He recently realized we’ll all die and that was a fun conversation to have at bedtime.
“Yes, I’ll die, you’ll die, the dog will die. Have a good sleep!”
On the plus side, he’s now quicker to apologize and hug, so I guess I’ll take it.
The eight-year-old who previously worshiped me is now officially horrified by me. I stepped foot into her classroom to distribute fundraiser stuffs, as is my PTO responsibility (of course I’m on the PTO), and the look on her face about broke my heart. As her teacher introduced me to the class, other faces lit up as they recognized me. My kid searched for the nearest exit and I died inside. Since that day, I’ve caught her watching me with a look that can only be described as, “MUST YOU EXIST?” She has also informed me on multiple occasions that I am embarrassing to be around and she does so in a tone and at a volume meant to inspire the same upon me. As any good parent does, I choke back the tears and promise I won’t volunteer in her classroom or chaperone her field trips this year because she can kiss my whole ass. I may have left that last part out, but I sure did stoop to those levels because it’s easier to be angry than hurt.
Oooooh, I get it now. Touché, ten-year-old…
Anyway, my only saving grace was supposed to be my sweet, still chubby-cheeked five-year-old, but she started kindergarten and it has officially ruined her. Look, I get it: when you’re not used to having every second of your day controlled, down to when you can use the bathroom, you’ve got to let the crazy out. All that crazy is let out at home. We now live in a state of constant conflict. She’s so desperate to make a choice–ANY choice–about her life that we now argue about ev.er.ything. We almost came to blows last night about whether or not she’d brush her teeth or put on her PJs first. I’m trying to give her grace because she deserves it, but her siblings are throwing my heart for a loop these days so it’s almost impossible to be as patient as I should be with her. Sigh. It also doesn’t help that she and kindergarten aren’t exactly jiving. Last week, she straight fled the bus stop scene, refusing to board the bus to school. I called her like a loose dog, even started the Countdown: “I said get back here! One! TWO! IF I GET TO THREE YOU’RE LOSING YOUR iPAD!” Neighbors avoided eye contact. I could feel sympathy oozing from their pores and wanted to say something that would make things less awkward, so I went with ol’ faithful: inappropriate humor. I yelled to the bus driver, “Don’t wait on us, I’ll just drive her to school and then off a cliff!”
That went over like a fart in church.
I personally think farts in church are hilarious, so that explains a lot.
On the professional front, now that school is back in session, I’ve been in contact with a lot of moms and dads who fall under the umbrella of That Parent. I believe the potential to be That Parent lives in all of us, and though we can’t control our inclinations, we can certainly control our actions. Do we morph into pearl-clutchers who support our child’s entitlement issues and play the blame game or do we take a deep breath and teach our child the hard lesson that the world doesn’t revolve around them? One conversation with a student and I know how their parents will answer that question.
One of my children wants me to email their teacher and ask why they have homework on the weekends. Ain’t gonna do it. If it’s assigned, they’ll do it. It doesn’t matter that they hate it or even that I don’t agree with it. Life is all about doing things we don’t want to do. DEAL. Another of my kids doesn’t like the way their teacher teaches. I look at it as a great lesson in adaptability and overcoming adversity. If they can learn despite the instruction not being up to their standards (hahaha!), we’ll consider the year a win. I almost feel bad for my kids because since we’re both educators, my husband and I are quick to tell them to shut their face holes when they come home from school complaining about something. I know that’s not what the majority of other parents is telling their kids. I know this because I teach the majority’s kids and HOLY SHIT.
What else? Oh, my uterus is gone. Had me a partial hysterectomy. I’ll share more about the actual procedure and recovery later because I think it’ll help a lot of women, but something important to note for now: my surgery gave #HusbandWTF the dumbs. In the prolific words of Lizzo, “Why’re men great ’til they gotta be great?” About a week after the procedure, my husband said these words to me: “This house actually looks dirty. Like, I can SEE the dirt.” Since I was banned from most cleaning activities for at least a month, I thought the next logical step would be him pushing a vacuum around for a few minutes. I thought wrong.
“Why’re men great ’til they gotta be great?”
In response to his less than stellar contributions post-surgery, I flew off the handle a whole bunch and slept more than necessary. My kids thought I was going to die, a fun fact I learned after my ten-year-old had that nighttime freak-out. Oye vey.
So yeah. I’m screwing up left and right over here by simply existing. You, too? Meh. At least we can laugh about it.
We are laughing, right?
Your two-cents here: