Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Uh-Oh. Mom Cussed.

"Hadley. THAT'S IT! Quit being an asshole."

Whoa. Shock. Silence.

Had I just said that? Did I really just call my 8-year-old an asshole? Sure, I've referred to her as an asshole behind her back, but had I really just said it out loud?

I must have. Everyone in the van was now quiet.

Uh-Oh. Mom cussed. She means business.

Shit. This was a new low. I felt terrible. Now I felt like the asshole. I couldn't believe I just called her that. What kind of a mother says that?

Was it justifiable? Probably not. Yet this is how it happened.

The hour was past lunch and though the children had been fed, I had not fed myself so I suppose low blood sugar could have been a contributing factor.

The weather was 100 degrees; however, with the humidity, we were near the throes of hell.

The location was the mini-van. Enough said.

Hadley had invented a game to play with her sister that went something like this: Hadley made up math problems that were beyond Cameron's comprehension and then awarded herself points when Cameron was unable to solve them.

The hunger, the heat and cruel game was a recipe that brought my blood to a boil.

Though she had been warned to stop, though she had been threatened, Hadley kept right on going with her game.

"Cameron, what's 20 plus 10?"

"Um, 18?"

"No! It's 30, which means I have 30 points and you have zero."

Cameron wisely quit the game, and Hadley began to tease her. 

I'd had it. That was enough. I let it fly.

"Hadley. THAT'S IT. Quit being an asshole."

Whoa. Shock. Silence.

Damn, now what? Now, I'd really done it. Now all of my kids were probably going to start calling each other assholes - or worse, other people's kids assholes. Perfect.

For a good few minutes, no one spoke. This is unheard of in my mini-van. It is quite possible I will now curse at them every 3 minutes in order to keep the peace.

Finally, I had to say something.

"Hadley, I'm sorry," I told her. "I got frustrated and I said something that wasn't very nice. What you were doing to your sister was wrong, but I was wrong too and I'm sorry."

"It's OK mom." Hadley said. "I'm sorry too. I was being mean."

Wow. What a mature response. I was proud of her apology and confession, though I was still ashamed of myself.

A few minutes passed and then there was this:

"Hey Cam! Let's play! What's 15 plus 12?"

 I'm pretty sure that answer equals asshole.


Dear Hadley,

There will come a time when you read this post and when you do, I hope you find this to be true...

You were, indeed, being an asshole  - but more importantly,  I loved you enough to call you out on it. 

 - Mom

PPS. Be nice to your sister. 

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Sharking Her Pants

My poor kid's breath stunk. Like really stunk - like made my toes curl gagging stank-ass stunk. The putrid smell coupled with her nausea and sore throat brought forth a diagnosis that any seasoned mother could make on her own, yet I had to make a trip to the pediatrician's office for the official verdict: strep throat.

This marks this kid's 5th bout of the strep bug this school year, the last one being just 4 weeks ago. So, she is now a strep throat pro. While she used to be incredibly freaked out by the back-of-the-throat swab, she now doesn't even put down her iPod while they go at her with the giant q-tip.

Yet today, something threw her for a loop.

DR: Well child, I think we need a stronger antibiotic.

Child (whose name is being protected for the sake of potential adolescent humiliation): Uh huh - ok.

DR: You're going to have to be careful with this one. Do you know what a "Shart" is?

Um, did he just say that? 

Is "Shart" a term he learned in med school? Is a "Shart" recognized by the American Academy of Pediatrics? Where did this guy go to med school? Did he even go to med school? Was he a real doctor? For god's sake, how was I going to explain a "Shart?" How would that conversation go?

Well, honey, a "Shart" is a fusion of the words shit and fart - you put them together and you have a "Shart." The doctor was basically telling you not to fart and shit your pants.

But I didn't need to worry. My daughter had this one handled.

Child: Yeah - a shark - it swims in the ocean. I saw one in Florida when we went to the aquarium. I got a real shark's tooth as a souvenir.

DR: No, that's not exactly it...

ME: It's ok - I'll explain it later in the car.

That wasn't good enough for Dr. Shart. 

DR: If you sneak out a fart, you might poop a little in your pants.

Well that did it.

Later, it took me 45 minutes of pleading to convince her to take the first dose of her antibiotic.

Child: Moooooooooommmmm! Nooooooooooo! I don't want to shark!

For god's sake, maybe the child thought actual sharks were going to come flying out of her ass.

ME: You probably won't have any sharking so just go ahead and take it. You need to get better.

Child: Nooooooooooo Mom - he said I'll shark in my pants.

And so it went for nearly an hour before she downed the shark-inducing antibiotics. One dose down the hatch - only thirty more to go.

It's been a few days now - a few looooong days, where three times a day, we have to have the shark conversation, and while there have been no incidents of sharks in her underpants, I'm fairly certain she'll never, again, want to visit the aquarium.

However, I've been thinking I'll mail Dr. Shart a present....her empty bottle of antibiotic with her souvenir shark tooth right inside.