I woke up this morning to the sound of the Demon Child screeching – always a lovely touch, especially at the beginning of a new day, and a new school week. Apparently her favourite rose sweater shrank in the wash. I should point out that the sweater in question was originally mine, before she stole it.
“Mom, I gave this to you to wash. Look at it – it’s too small. It’s ruined! “ I do love to start my day with my daughter’s clothes shoved in my face.
“Darling, it was washed the day the washing machine didn’t work. I put your sweater aside so I could wash it later, but the cleaning lady was here and she washed it.
“But I gave it to you – Can’t you ever do anything right?” Nope, I’m just dumb. Deep breath…and again…
“If you really want it done just so, you could do your own laundry, just like your brother.” Please!
“NO, why should I. You’re home all day. You’re a housewife. You have nothing else to do. And I have a life – I have things to do and things to worry about!” Right, and I’m just your lazy mom who happens to have a B.A., M.B.A. and a C.A. but hey, as a 16 year old, you know best darling.
A year ago I would have jumped down her throat, wrestled her to the ground and taught her to respect her elders. Now? A Zen-like calm filtered down over me. Why? Well, experience is the main reason – in the past when I’ve reacted to my daughter’s outrageous remarks, our discussion has escalated to a fight, then a battle, then an out and out war where nobody wins. Plus I’ve read Get out of My Life, But First Could you Drive Me and Cheryl to the Mall? by Anthony E. Wolf too many times to count. If you’re a parent of tweens or teens, do yourself a favour and buy it now!
Besides, I knew that I really would have the final word – literally, right here on my blog. Ha!
In the meantime, breakfast was equally combative.
“Mom, make my waffles. “
“I have dear – they’re in the toaster oven.”
“Well then put jam on them.” I silently refused, and went to check the laundry.
“Ew, this tastes terrible. Are you trying to kill me?” Bite lip, don’t respond, breathe…
Of course because the sweater was ruined, my daughter had to change her total outfit – jeans, underwear, socks, top, etc. which took an additional 15 minutes. Which meant we were late leaving for school. Which meant it was my fault she was late. Whatever.
“Mom, help me carry my stuff to the car. You’re not carrying anything.”
“You can carry your own things yourself after the way you’ve talked to me this morning.” Ooops – a crack in my careful façade, but I couldn’t stay silent any longer.
At least there was no more screaming and/or yelling and/or talking on the drive to school.
I came home to check my emails, the weather, Fresh Pressed, Huffington Post only to discover…my internet connection was not working.
Rats, it must be Monday. Really!