Monday, April 15, 2013

Waving the White Flag: A/K/A Getting Your Ass Kicked by a Six Year Old

I can't be the only single mother who has bad days.  I mean, heinously bad days.  Days where you want to sell the child to the gypsies and spend the money on a trip to Hawaii. 

(Shit, did I just say that?)

I know there are a number of factors at play here.  And, I am going to guess there was a full moon over the weekend.  If there wasn't, just keep that to yourself.  It's MY story and I'm going with full moon. 

Friday night I was buried in boxes, packing things up and getting ready for the move.  Which means my house looked like it had been vandalized.  Of course, this activity did not jive with the six year old's planned evening of cartoon and cuddle time, which I kept putting off for just "five more minutes" or just "one more box, honey" because I was running on borrowed energy, having been up since 5:30 a.m. and already worked a full day.  I just wanted to get things done, ready for the next day.  It was chaos.  When I did finally stop and take her to bed for cuddle time, she passed out about two seconds before I did.  We didn't do the regular reading time before bed or any of that.  We just crashed and burned.  Way to bond with the kid, Mom.  Good job.

I was also dealing with a 13 year old boy who was completely losing his mind over the fact he had a band ensemble performance the next morning.  His first one and he was freaking the hell out.  And when he is stressed about something, it is as if he is the only person in the history of ever who has had so much stress and it is the most important thing in the entire universe and requires immediate attention. 

*Barges in while I am putting his sister to bed*

"Mom, did you iron my clothes, I have to look nice for the performance tomorrow"

(yawning) "Honey, hang them up in my room. I set my alarm and I will get up early and iron them for you."

"Okay, what time are you planning to get up?  We need to get there early for warm up.  I have to warm up before we play."

"I know.  Your sister has done these things about a half dozen times.  It's not my first ride in the rodeo."

"We need to leave at 9.  I have to be there about an hour before we play."

(No he doesn't)

"We will get there in plenty of time, I promise.  Now get a shower and go to bed so you are rested in the morning." (So mom can get some damn sleep)


Meanwhile, my teenage daughter was busily texting her boyfriend, who just graduated from school that afternoon and is moving about a half hour away and they are both very melancholy about it.  I attempted to make conversation with her about that before I went to bed, but honestly, she probably got the short end of the stick that night.  I wanted to sympathize with her because I know when you are a teenager and your boyfriend leaves it is the most horrible thing ever, but I was exhausted to the point of not making any sense.  I think I may have patted her shoulder (it may have been the cat, I really have no idea) and said "It'll be fine, honey, I promise" and then walked into a wall on my way back to bed.

Sorry kids.  I am only one person.  You each have different needs and I am failing miserably at meeting any of them, much less all of them.

(Yeah.  It was one of THOSE weekends.)

I didn't sleep very well.  I woke up often during the night.  It happens sometimes.  Then, Saturday morning I continued the pattern, waking up at 4:00am, then 5:00am, then 5:20am and then 6:00am.  And finally, my alarm went off at 7:00a.m.  I was almost glad it finally went off so I had a reason to get out of that good for nothing asshole bed of mine.  My body, however, wasn't done sleeping.  It was going to be a long ass day.

I showered, got the boy up, ironed his clothes, put on something presentable and then woke up the teenager to let her know where her sister's dance clothes were because her father was going to pick her up for ballet class in about an hour (since they haven't perfected cloning technology and her dance class is at the same time as her brother's band performance, an hour away).  I threw some coffee in the general direction of my face and headed out.

Got though the performance.  He did well but they only got a 2nd division rating instead of 1st division so he was ticked off the whole way home. 

"We should've gotten a 1st Division rating."

"I told Mr. P I didn't want to do this anyway."

"Why did he sign me up for this?"

There, there, son.  There, there.

Came home and moved some truckloads of crap to storage.  Hoping some of it would blow out of the car on my way there so I didn't have to unload it.

Sent the 6 year old and the 13 year old off to their friends' houses for the evening for sleepovers. 

Spent the evening relaxing with the eldest teenager and watching movies and bonding and stuff.  That was the highlight of my weekend.  It was all downhill from there.

Sunday, I did NOT wake up until 11:00 a.m.  Well, I woke up briefly at 8:00 a.m., took some pain relief medication for my screaming back, and collapsed back into bed.  THEN, I woke up suddenly and looked at the clock and it said ELEVEN. OH.  FIVE.   Holy shit.  And the reason I woke up then was because my daughter had called to tell me she was getting dropped off soon. 

You'd think I would be well rested and ready to take on the day, right?  Oh my gods.  Not even close. 

The 6 year old came home with an ATTITUDE from HELL.  Precipitated by the fact that her friend had the nerve to go to her cousin's birthday party at Chuck E Cheese and not invite my child.  It took me a half hour to explain to my daughter why she couldn't crash another kid's party.  She was NOT having any of that. 

(Why did the other child have to rub it in her face that she was going to Chuck E Cheese?  Why not just tell my kid Santa is going to skip our house this year?  Thanks, kid.  PS:  Paybacks are a BITCH.  Yeah, I just tough-talked a 6 year old in my head.) 

My darling angel then spent the entire day jumping up and down on my last nerve.  Actually, my nerves were shot.  She was jumping up and down on my nerve ending.  The last one. 

She didn't want to eat anything I offered her. She didn't want to do any of the activities I suggested.  She certainly didn't want to help with anything or put any of her shit away.  She DID want to have a tantrum about how I packed up her very favorite doll (that she has not touched in six months) and demand that I take her down to retrieve it from storage. 

Excuse me???  (BREATHE, BREATHE, BREATHE. Don't cry.  Don't throw a tantrum.  Don't throw things.  *talking to myself here, not my 6 year old*)

My oldest daughter was busy doing homework all day long and I picked up my son around 2:00 p.m. from his friend's house.  He spent some time on the computer with his headphones on and she was attempting to focus on her homework while both attempted to stay out of the line of fire.  They can tell when Mom is about to lose her shit.  The youngest does not seem to notice when the vein in my forehead starts throbbing.  And, when she DOES see it, she is the one who will walk right up to me and push it with her finger.  Repeatedly.

We got a brief reprieve from little hell on wheels for awhile when she went outside to play with the neighbor kid, but then he ticked her off and she came home crying because 7 year old boys are stupid.


I managed to get one more truckload moved yesterday afternoon with my son's help and then took the six year old with me grocery shopping, thinking maybe the one-on-one time would mellow her out and she was almost acting normal until we got back home again.  The rest of the night was a continuation of the power struggle: 

"I don't want to eat that."

"Can I have some candy?  Why NOT??"

"Why do I have to get a shower?"

"Help me put on my pajamas.  I can't doooooooooo ittttttttt myyyyyyselfffffff!"

"Why do I have to brush my teeth??"

"Can I sleep in your bed?"

"Why not?"

"I can't stop thinking about ghosts and scary stuff and if I don't sleep in your bed I might have a bad dream!!"

*Cries because life isn't fair and she is six and has to sleep in a warm bed provided for her by her mother who is about two bad moments from hitting the road with only the clothes on her back*

I walk out into the living room, t-shirt askew, hair a mess, wild-eyed.  The teenagers are tentatively looking up from what they are doing to see if they should say anything or if they should wait for the throbbing vein in my temple to return to normal. 

I clean up the kitchen, go to my room, set my alarm and pull the blankets as far over my head as they will go.

Except for the little white flag sticking out the top.