So, we are sitting on the steps, five minutes until the children will be late for school.
Lucy, sitting on the coach, fully dressed with her coat on waiting patiently.
Abram, begging Lucy to put his socks on because he is having trouble with one sock.
Me: Abram, you can do it. You have put your socks on may times. Lucy does not have to do that for you.
Abram: But my sock is stretched out and it will fall of in my shoe.
Me: No, Abram. Here, I will help you. <puts sock on, puts shoes on>
Abram likes to pull the tongues up on his shoes so I have to resist the urge to pull the tongue, I will get in trouble if he doesn’t get to do it.
Abram pulls the tongue but his one sock is a little stretched so the fabric from the heel sticks out from the back of the shoe. He can’t stand this. I am trying to be patient as he starts to get frustrated and begins to kick his shoes off. Both shoes. But why, only one is having an issue? Abram! Seriously! If you don’t like your socks just go up and get another pair before you get mad.
I go find him another pair because we are in a hurry and now we are officially late and I don’t have time for you to stomp upstairs and find another pair of socks only to realize they are a pair that definitely don’t work because they are too small or don’t fit. Guess what, these socks are a little stretched in the heel too. What happened to your feet over the break? How do your feet shrink or your socks stretch? Ugh!
Before Abram gets frustrated, because I can see it is coming, I try to encourage him to walk around a little bit, preferably to the bathroom so we can brush your teeth, and I bet your socks will work themselves out! Just walk around, they will be fine!
Well they are not fine. He starts kicking stuff off the steps and I get serious with him about how would he feel if Lucy kicked his things of the steps and now we are SO late to school and Lucy is late because you are getting frustrated about your socks and YOU STILL HAVENT BRISHED YOUR TEETH OR TAKEN YOUR VITAMINS AND WE ARE LATE!!!!
I hate being late. That’s my trigger. I can hold it together until someone or something gets in the way of me being on time for things.
FINE!!!! He says and stomps his way to the bathroom. Knocking over everything in sight in his way.
Now in therapy, they tell me to ignore this behavior because it is for attention but seriously, stop knocking all my S*** over!
As he gets to the bathroom he screams “FINE!” again and tries to slam the bathroom door in my face. Big bad Mom catches the door and says “Oh no you don’t. Don’t you slam the door on your Mother. I AM YOUR MOTHER!”. Ha_ha. He’s really happy about that right now I bet.
In hind sight, If I had just ignored him and done what I was supposed to do, we would have still been late, we were late any way, but maybe he would have calmed down and the following fight would not have ensued?
Oh well ya know. Eh.
So. I make his tooth brush for him to speed up the process. He sticks the brush in his mouth and sits on the toilet, he does not brush. He sits.
We are in a hurry!
I take the brush and start brushing his teeth. I am sure I am lecturing him now, and threatening that if he doesn’t get it together all of his toys will be gone from his room when he gets home from school.
Lecturing when your kids are mad or upset doesn’t work. Yet, I still always think its a good idea and one day, my kids will listen and think my ideas are the best and tell me they are sorry and give me a hug and never do anything wrong again.
Something goes wrong while I am brushing his teeth and he gets mad. I must have bothered his loose tooth. O well, you want it to come out anyway. He then proceeded to go straight to the towel instead of spitting in the sink.
Me: NO ABRAM! YOU BETTER NOT SPIT IN THAT TOWEL! SPIT IN THE SINK!!!!!
Abram: (Totally has had it with his Mom and loses all control of his temper) AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH! I WASN”T!!
Me: (Wait for it… totally proud Mom moment here…) <crouches down in childs face> AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH! HOW DO YOU LIKE IT?????? HOW DO YOU LIKE IT WHEN SOMEONE SCREAMS IN YOUR FACEEEEEEEE???? ROARRRRRRR…
Abram runs. I follow. He’s yelling stuff, can’t remember what it is now but he was probably yelling about how much he loves me. I’m hot. So pissed off. Lucy is still sitting on couch patiently. I commend Lucy. I Tell Abram that it is time to go and we have to go. He runs upstairs. If you do not come down stairs right now, I am taking all of your toys. They WILL NOT be here when you get home.
If you do not come down RIGHT NOW I am leaving you here by yourself!
Lucy looks at me. I tell her to go get in the car.
Abram. Fine. I am leaving you here.
Unfortunately, my first thought was that when I get back from school, he will have destroyed everything in the house and I didn’t want to have to clean it all up.
Seriously. That was your first thought Janet?
My second thought was, I can’t do that, it’s illegal.
I stomp up the steps.
I see Abram with his back against the wall and his arms crossed. I can’t leave you here. It’s illegal. You have to come with me.
Abram: NO! Humph!
I try to pick Abram up. He is REALLY heavy and really strong. He starts swinging and trying to sit down. Somehow, Super Mom (that’s me, obvi) gets ahold of him and picks him up. I storm down the steps. I grab his sweatshirt, not his winter coat because he hates it and I don’t want to fight about that too (I’m so thoughtful). I grab his backpack and I storm out the door. I get him through the van door before he jumps out of my arms.
I slam my car door and throw the van into reverse.
It is at this moment that I realize it is 16 degrees outside and I am only wearing a long sleeve shirt and some leggings. Abram is going to be freezing in his sweatshirt. Maybe his teacher will not take them out for recess since its so cold. I hope not.
Finally we get to school. I let Lucy go. I Give her a big hug and apologize about the morning and tell her that I am really proud of her for doing a great job. I storm back into the car. I am having a mental dilemma. I need help. Clearly I am out of control. I am angry and I lost self control. Abram is mad and angry and I don’t know what to do. DO I take him home? Do I carry him in and request a meeting with the school counselor? What do I do? How do I redeem this situation? This is NOT how I want to drop my kids off at school.
I love my kids so much and the last thing I want to do is ruin their lives. Or their day. Both are not good. Ha.
I get back in the car and I look at Abram. Silent. Looking at his feet. Arms crossed.
Abram, I love you. I am very sorry for getting angry with you. I love you very much and I hope you can forgive me. Do you forgive me?
We get out of the car.
IT IS FREAKING FREEZING and I almost lost all of my fingers walking into that school.
We get to the entrance and I get on my knees, apologize again and give Abram a big hug and told him to have a great day.
You know what the miracle in this story is? He hugged me back. He embraced me. He hugged me. He still loves me. Sometimes I don’t know why, but they do. I didn’t deserve his love or forgiveness this morning, but he gave it to me anyway.
He never spoke to me after we got out of the car and before he left me for class… but I know he still loves me.
At 9:00 AM on Tuesday morning, I am half in tears and half on my way to happy hour.
Before I decided to write this post, I was laying in my bed texting my husband, teary eyed, praying and high on adrenaline.
Writing is a really good outlet for me and helps me sort through my feelings…
I am not a perfect Mom and sometimes I really suck. Being a parent is really hard. I am going to feel guilty about this for days. I will try to smother my children in affection when they get home from school to try and make up for my ass-holeness this morning which they will deny and I will feel sad.
So, as I set here reflecting on todays events, I am an hour late for work. I have done 0 housework (sorry Ryan!). I am cold. I am sad. I am disappointed. But, I also have hope. I have hope that God will redeem this situation. I have hope that one day, we will not have days like this. Maybe I will have many days like this until I get to Heaven, but I will not have days like this in Heaven. And lastly, I am grateful. I am grateful that I am not alone. I am grateful that I have children that will love me one day (haha) and I am grateful that everyday is an opportunity to become a better person. In the Christian world be call this sanctification, but for everyone, isn’t every opportunity an opportunity to grow and learn? We still fail, I will fail again, but that is just another opportunity to try again.
Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything. James 1:2-4
And, now I am an hour and 15 minutes late for work…