Most of a parents’ job is holding your shit together. No matter what, you are expected to hold. it. together. Use glue, use tape, use chewing gum, use spit, use whatever you need to to hold. it. TOGETHER, man!
I sometimes find that I get into these shitty moods. Craptacular moods that put “hangry” to shame. For me, in fact, it’s quite the opposite. What’s the opposite of “hangry”? Stangry? Feengry? I’ve stuffed all the emotional border snacks into my face and by the end of the internal fit, i am disgusted with myself and all the things i’ve eaten.
Border snacks = anything and everything bordering your space as you move through the house/office/mental ward.
Stangry = stuffed angry
Feengry = Feed [your emotional disgusting face] angry
Anyway, today I’m in one of those moods. I realized it may have something to do with keeping it together through two nights and days of my daughter’s short-lived terror of her dark bedroom and bathroom last week. Also, my son had a robotics tournament yesterday and a parent was required to attend the entire day with the child. 8-5:30 alternating between camp chair seats, cement floor walking, and bleacher sitting. My husband managed to tag me out for an hour out of the day. He was there for the last, most painful bleacher-seating hour, so I guess that counts for double the points….. but not really. (Hello Dear, no I don’t want to talk about it)
Anyway, so back to my point. A parents job is to hold it together no matter what. Don’t get me wrong, I’ve joined into a fit and tantrum a few times in my child’s lives just so they get the full impact of their ridiculousness. It’s quite fun, actually. You can’t get sucked in, though. And boy do they try! The older they get, the more refined their tactics become. It is their mission to suck you into the argument and drag you down with them… to the floor… where they are flailing around in a desperate attempt to find their actual point.
I’ve mentioned before that my daughter conned us. She is a spectacular con artist! See, she began life as an angel. She was a wonderful toddler, and she was a caring and loving preschooler. Then shit started to get real. She has never lived up to the terror and horror her older brother has thrown at us, but she has her own special recipe for crazy-making.
She is terrified by all things imaginary. Ghosts, zombies, monsters, her stuffed giraffe, and now boxes. Yes, boxes. She had a bad dream involving a box being opened beside her and something terrifying jumping out. Therefor in her 7 year old mind, all boxes are now expected to threaten her life. The dreamed box was a threat, so now the boxes existing in real life are naturally the same. Duh. Dumbass mom.
So last week she was asked to go brush teeth and get ready for bed. She had to go upstairs, where her grandma was in her own room, all the lights in the landing were on. The bathroom light was off. Clearly, one cannot simply walk up to the switch panel and turn the light on. NOoOOOOOOOoo. No way. One must stand farthest from the dark room and scream, squeal, cry and rant about it being dark. We are talking utter panic.
To be continued…
At first I wanted to scream and rant right back at her. Instead, I walked away. Once I cleared her insanity radius, I was able to collect my brain cells and chuckle at the absurdity. Then I would go back and try to talk sense into her. Yelling at her right back does not help. Getting loud back at the offender simply feeds the hysteria.
This fit lasted around 20 minutes. Once she saw I was filming she continued without a single care. I even opened the front door at one point hoping the shame of her friends who are neighbors hearing her would snap her out of it. Nope. She was on a mission to have someone, anyone, come turn on a light for her. I will not raise a princess. You will turn on the muthatrucking light switch. No one is going to rescue you except yourself. 2 years old? Ok i’ll help. 3 years old? Ok, i’ll help. 7 years old? I will help you help yo’self.
This portion of the evening entertainment includes coughing brought on by crying that sometimes precedes vomiting:
So I think my new theory of parenting is for each tantrum you manage to contain your own shit through, the crapier you will feel later. All that incredulousness and disgust at your offspring’s behavior manifests itself one way or another. You would think by now I’d become a runner or a power lifter or something. Nope. I have become a power snacker-then-regretter. But i do it really well.