This will go down in history as the most difficult morning getting the kids ready and off to school. My 4 year old, Adelle, is strong as they come. Overall I am so thankful for this, but days like today I wonder if I'll ever make it being her Mom. It is so exhausting.
Since 6:30 this morning I've given her most of my attention. It's her Valentine's party today so it took a little extra time to get things ready. She refused to finish her Valentine's cards because "boys don't want princess cards" (smart girl). I suggested we write their name only on the suckers so she had something to give. At first she hated the idea, then she liked it, then she hated it... so we came back to writing them all a Valentine's card. (Mind you, we had been working on these since the beginning of the week!) At one point she started bending the cards that were already finished because she was upset. I kept reminding her that she could choose not to do them, but she might be sad if she had nothing to give at the party. It went from this to "I'm not going to the stupid valentine's party!" I thought to myself "Ok, good to know! Then let's stop wasting our freakin time!"
It's a miracle we finished them.
During her bath I asked if I could lay out her clothes on her bed (that she picked out last night). She said yes, so I did.
I went about my business catering to the other three; my nursing babe, my 2 year old in need of attention, my 7 year old in need of guidance... bags to fill, lunches to pack, snow gear!?..."omg, Everett please be gentle with the baby!"
I go to check on Adelle. She's standing there naked, upset and refusing to do anything more. Then I realize she threw all her clothes and shoes that I laid out in the mess of her bedroom!
That's it. I've had it. I'm so done I could scream!
I've been working with the kids through the "bucket system" hoping to speak in a way they can understand, so I say; "Adelle, that's it! You didn't just tip over my bucket, you kicked it across the room! I am all done trying to help. You are on your own and can figure yourself out from here." I walk out.
Holy crap, did it get worse. I sat on the couch to continue nursing the babe. Gremlin-girl had her way in that room and kept screaming "Mommy! !! Mommy!!" She came out and I told her I was no longer able to help her. "There are 3 other people who need my help, Adelle, and you continue to treat me horribly! Mommy is all done helping when you treat me like this."
There she is; hair wet, naked, and in "refusal state."
Lord have mercy.
Liam (my 7 year old) is ready to go and waiting. By the time she decides to get dressed, it was certain she would be late and Liam may not make it on time.
Hesitant to say anything more I dry her hair, throw myself together, load the kids and drive off to school.
Rage inside kept me from crying my eyes out. I turned up the music full blast. It was calming. I almost couldn't hear the frustration in my mind.
As the sun shined through and the music played, the emotion lessened; enough for me to lift my eyes to the rear view mirror, where I caught Adelle's. Smiling big she says, "I'm so glad I listen to my Mom."
Of all the things I could say, I just smiled back. We continued to smile. It was like grinding my teeth not to say what was really on my mind but the reality is this: I would rather leave her with that truth, than remind her of where she fell short.
When we pulled up to the school she said, "I'm sorry I made us late for school and tipped your bucket today."
"It's ok babe. I forgive you. We all make mistakes"
Deep breathing continues. I love this girl so much it hurts. All this strength in her is really very good.
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~ a memoir of motherhood and life