Posted by: canthold | April 21, 2008


Ever have one of those days when you want to run away from home? That would be me today. I’ve had a serious case of Extreme Irritability for the last few days. My husband’s brother sent us some Alaskan King Crab legs for my husband’s birthday and I’ve been blaming it on that. Of course, to my daughter this is logical, but they were more delicious than grump-inducing.

I went to a meeting at the school district office today. It was like a closed meeting – but with me there. Everyone else sat in these big leather chairs and a table in front of them and I was in a little tiny banquet chair in the “audience” with my two kids on the floor next to me. I didn’t feel welcome and while I was interested and engaged, I was invisible.

Then my kids started fighting. This was after I told them three times before the meeting that I needed them on their best behavior. I told them what “best behavior” meant and what I expected. “No fighting” was in there, I’m certain of it. I had them bring entertainment and I thought I was reasonably within my means of having them quiet and entertained for about an hour. They were probably 15 minutes into the meeting – exactly one agenda item – before the dam burst and my kids had a meltdown. It was the witching hours between three and five when my kids are tired from their day and not their adorable selves, but I was livid.

I picked up everything we brought (a lot) and took my brighter-than-a-sunburned red face, two kids and my humiliation out the door with me. I know that I shouldn’t have been too embarrassed, since these folks are educators and probably all parents, too, but given the way they didn’t seem all that parent-friendly and my invisible status, I was.

Once we got home, I banished the kids to their room until I forgot how mad I was. They called me mean. I told them they didn’t know what mean was.

And I really wanted to be at the meeting, too.

Later on, after dinner, after I forgot how mad I was, they played in our upstairs bathroom (aka powder room) and plugged up the toilet with excess toilet paper. I’m afraid to check. I think it’s just toilet paper, so I’ll wait for the dissolving period and try flushing again.

After that, I sent them to their own bathroom to wash up to get ready for bed. I heard water blasting out of the faucet for a little too long and yelled to turn it off. No response. “Turn it off!” No response. I went to investigate and my oldest daughter informed me that it wouldn’t go off. They broke the faucet somehow. I couldn’t get the shut-off valve to budge and kept at the faucet until I had a breakthrough. I have no idea how they did it as it was so hard to undo.

After that, I made them get in their pjs and separated them. I figured that divided I can conquer them. They’ve been quite a team today and I’ve had enough. One was put to bed in their room and the other in mommyanddaddy’s bed. And since that’s usually a treat, I told my youngest that she’ll be moved into her own bed after she’s asleep.

It was only a half-an-hour earlier than my ideal bedtime, which is about a half-an-hour earlier than the theoretical bedtime that their father and I agreed on but that I don’t usually use unless he’s home (he’s not.) So it’s not like they’re going to bed at 5pm. It’s already the ideal bedtime now.

Since I can’t run away from home because I wouldn’t be able to get a babysitter on such short notice, I’ll open a bottle of wine. Feel sorry for myself. Maybe clean the playroom/exercise room/dumping room because I’m going to get an estimate on a new window and siding tomorrow. Or I’ll put in a movie since it’s so early. Or I’ll go to bed at a reasonable time. Or I’ll meditate my cares away. Or I’ll read my book(s). Or I’ll…



  1. Wow, they sound exciting, haha. I don’t have kids, but I can imagine how many times I would be pulling my hair out if I did. I used to babysit a friend of mine’s kids a lot (Note that my friend is 25 years older than me, that makes it sound a little less weird) and at first, they were horrible. They both loved the stuffing out of me, which made it so much worse because they thought “Yes, fun time!” but that stopped after I explained to them that I am not just a fun and games person all the time, put in a movie of their choice, sat them down, told them to shush and every time after that they were angels.

    I love other people’s kids, I get to send them back and not have to put up with them after a few hours; it’s fabulous.

  2. I’m sure you were pretty fun to have around. I always recommend having kids in your 30’s so that you have more patience, though it’s off-set by less energy. I doubt I would be half the mom I am if I’d done this earlier.

    Also – I fixed the upstairs toilet. Yay Me!

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