I wanna start a fight!

angry lady

courtesy iclipart.com

I got a brand new attitude
And I’m gonna wear it tonight
I wanna get in trouble
I wanna start a fight

Ever have one of those days where you wake up feeling tired and grumpy and each and every little insignificant thing  morphs into a massive soul-destroying catastrophe.

And you wanna start a fight?

Things like…

listening to your husband’s snoring all night, every night

mansnoringwife

courtesy iclipart.com

having to stay inside and work on a long-awaited gorgeous summer day

womanundies

courtesy iclipart.com

going into your bathroom and finding no toilet paper, the toilet seat up, your husband’s nail clippings on each and every surface of your bathroom, except in the toilet or garbage and wet stinky towels on the floor

Embarrassed

courtesy iclipart.com

 

the way the dog moans and whines and looks at you even after you’ve fed him and he’s done his business outside

whinypup

iclipart.com

discovering you have no coffee beans or milk in the morning and your usual routine includes 2 triple shot lattes

coffeespill

courtesy iclipart.com

learning that your daughter has been so busy working her four puny 6-hour shifts a week that she hasn’t had time to sort out a couple minor administrative matters that will allow her to graduate from university with good marks

girl_girl_puffed_up

courtesy iclipart.com

So you send the 5 second email on her behalf and are then livid with yourself for cleaning up her mess. Again!

Hairpull

courtesy iclipart.com

that critically acclaimed, multiple award-winning book you’re reading sucks swampgas – a technical term my kids use

bad book

courtesy iclipart.com

And you have a unwanted, unwelcome birthday coming up just around the corner, which everyone in your family will probably forget anyways

older2

courtesy iclipart.com

Okay, so I had one of those days yesterday and rather than yell or kick the dog or hit my husband over the head, I decided to do something positive –  I decided to meditate. Yep, that’s right. I have officially gone over to that weird side – the one where the hippies (like my daughter) and the lazy dropouts (her friends) hang out

Hippie2

courtesy iclipart.com

as well as movie stars like Hugh Jackman and Clint Eastwood, celebrities like Oprah Winfrey and Jerry Seinfeld and CEO’s like Arianna Huffington and Larry Ellison.

So this Terrible Awful Mother decided to do it – I mean there must be something to it if it`s good enough for all those folks. I should mention I have been attempting to meditate on a somewhat regular basis. But some days I don’t can’t find the time and some days I try but I can’t keep physically still, let alone focus my mind. Recently I’ve been working through Oprah & Deepak’s 21 day meditation experience called  Getting Unstuck: Creating a Limitless Life! Sounds good right? – I figure I could use getting unstuck and a limitless life sounds pretty darn amazing.

So yesterday I was determined to do it. I went into my office, closed the door and clicked on the guided meditation.

girl_music_meditation_girl

courtesy iclipart.com

I sat comfortably in my chair, listened intently to the discussion, got into the zone and repeated the mantra when…

bang

courtesy iclipart.com

 

my husband, the Original Obnoxious One, kicked in the door, yelled howdy and shocked me right out of hard-fought focus

Yoga

courtesy iclipart.com

And started to laugh uncontrollably and loudly. For a very long time.

LetsLaugh

courtesy iclipart.com

My response ?

Na na na na na na na, I wanna start a fight
Na na na na na na na, I wanna start a fight

1765_angry_wife_with_a_rolling_pin

courtesy iclipart.com

I hadn’t told the Original Obnoxious One about my meditation attempts because I knew this would be his reaction. And that he’d intentionally bother me during crucial zen moments. He just wouldn’t be able to help himself.

And he couldn’t. But as for me?

So what?
I’m still a rock star
I got my rock moves
And I don’t need you

ladyrocker

courtesy iclipart.com

Yep, meditation works wonders for me! How ’bout you?

Really!

Song lyrics courtesy So What by Pink

The Devil’s left Georgia, and has gone up to West Vancouver

Where she’s living in my house.

Yep, last September I sent my daughter, the Weird One, off to university in the UK , but the Demon Child returned home in April 2014.

courtesy iclip.art

courtesy iclip.art

How do I know?

She begged and begged and begged me to get her a summer job at the cafe down the hill, even though she had never worked in a restaurant or coffee shop before. And this was my absolute favourite cafe that I frequent a couple times a week.

Chat

courtesy iclipart.com

Somehow the universe and the stars all aligned and I came through for her; the manager of the coffee shop was an old friend and was looking to hire for the summer. And it’s a 15 minute walk down the hill – I didn’t have to drive her. But the manager soon found a new job and moved on. Meanwhile absolutely everything changed at the cafe and the working environment went totally downhill. For example, the new manager:

forced my daughter to work shifts with people she didn’t like or know

and 

scheduled her for three 8 hour shifts in 3 days thus interfering with her extremely busy social life

plus

she wasn’t allowed to wear Lululemon pants or Uggs!

courtesy iclipart.com

courtesy iclipart.com

But this The Terrible Awful Mother told her to suck it up; I shared with her all the lousy summer jobs I’d had over the years and how I frequently worked two or more jobs at the same time so I’d have enough money for university. When those comments didn’t gain any traction, I told her I would cut off her credit card if she quit her job before finding a new one.

In the meantime my sister and I took our parents on a week long cruise to Alaska to celebrate their both turning 80.embarkation
Yes it was fantastic, but that’s the subject of another blog. Halfway through the cruise, in a very weak moment, I sent my daughter a text message inquiring how she was.

I should’ve known better.

She texted me back that she had quit her job, and predictably I SAW RED.

courtesy iclipart.com

courtesy iclipart.com

When I asked what had happened, she told me that she had a panic attack at work because the environment was toxic and she wasn’t going to let me push her around. She called me names (really, really bad ones) and demanded my support (mentally and financially);  I told her to get a grip and figure out a plan to get another job. A few more choice words flew back and forth, culminating in a 1:00 am screaming match on the cell phone. In the middle of the Alaskan Inside Passage. She threatened to leave home and live with friends and I… I said that was fine. She could either stay, apologize and be respectful or go and live elsewhere.

Such a lovely spot of entertainment in the middle of a cruise far from home IMG_2759Although clearly not far enough!

Her parting words to me:

Honestly if something happens to me it’s all on you. And also after this I want NOTHING to do with you. 

But the very next text said: Can you please put the money on my credit card. I have no money to eat!!!  (despite the fact that I did a humongous food shopping trip just before I left)

And: I found a place on Commercial to stay for the month of August for $300. Can you please chip in.

cinnamonroll11-300x236

the Demon Child’s latest obsession which the coffee shop doesn’t sell

In the mean time The Demon Child revoked my friend status on Facebook.  But hey, it’s important to have your priorities right!

Really!

 

 

 

 

 

 

It happened

It happened and it’s kept me really busy.

  • my son, the Obnoxious One, survived third year university more or less in one piece, turned 21 and arrived home two weeks ago; one internship fell through but another better opportunity may just work out this summer…we hope397566_10201028718439486_4699414364402152008_n
  • my daughter, the Weird One, returned home in early April from her first year of university abroad, with a nose ring, numerous other new piercings ( 7 in one ear and 5 in the other), ombre hair, and a dread lock; amazingly enough she landed a job at a local coffee shop with a little help and turned 19 a few days ago1622392_10153969194690204_2067224220_o
  • My husband, the Original Obnoxious One, and I flitted down to Laguna Beach for several days, made a quick trip to New York and then visited Vegas for the first time  – this little tree-loving hermit is still reeling from the overwhelming sights and sounds of Vegas, and yes, the Original Obnoxious One is an amazing photographerIMG_0352
  • our cabin is for sale again
  • we took our house off the market for a month, then re-listed it last week with a different agent
  • we’ve had 6 showings plus an open house and unfortunately the 3 houses we really liked are all sold, but we’re still hopeful there’s something out there for us1
  • my parents turned 80 and I planned a cruise to Alaska next month for them, myself, and my sister – I can hardly wait!

    courtesy celebritycruises.com

    courtesy celebritycruises.com

  • I took on the role of Treasurer for a very interesting and creative charity and for the first time in decades found myself mired in journal entries, adjusting journal entries, year end procedures and an Annual General Meeting

    courtesy iclipart.com

    courtesy iclipart.com

  • I polished off the second season of House of Cards in short order – gotta love Kevin Spacey!10306475_708054889217280_2568578375498721271_n
  • I finally joined the ranks of thousands and became enthralled with Downton Abbey, I consumed all 4 seasons in short order,and yes, I do have a love/hate relationship with Netflxacfc64e0226d90026cc0d53d5067d11b

Of course life goes on whether I blog about it or not. And one day, one day soon, an agent or publisher will call me and  The Trouble With Queenie will be published. It will happen.

But in the meantime my dear darling children are behaving more like they’re 4 and 6,Top-15rather than 19 and 21, with lots of screaming, slamming doors and unflushed toilets.

Never mind. Spring has arrived in the Pacific Northwest and the mountains and Franklinstein are calling my name. With any luck, the Obnoxious One and the Weird One will either kill each other or learn to get along. Frankly right now I don’t care which option they pick, as long as there’s progress.

Really!

Dear Sexy Moms of West Van

Do I have your attention now?!

courtesy iclipart.com

courtesy iclipart.com

 

This morning I ran into my favourite local coffee shop and grabbed a grande cafe latte, my little reward after a gruelling fitness class.

Yoga

courtesy iclipart.com

A group of you, whom I’ve known for years and years, were sitting and chatting at a table near the counter. One of you glanced up, smiled and said hi. Your friends ignored me, but hey, one out of three is actually pretty good.

You see, yesterday I met two long-time friends, also moms of classmates of my kids, for coffee. Yes, we drink a lot of coffee and lattes in West Van,  at least I certainly do!

courtesy iclipart.com

courtesy iclipart.com

 You were sitting at small tables on either side of us, and our children – yours and mine –  also went to school together. But this time not one of you looked at me. Not one of you said hello. And I was hard to miss ’cause I was wearing a bright yellow top and even brighter yellow running shoes.

Now we all live in the same small community of West Vancouver, which has a population of roughly 42,000. Yeah, it;s a pretty tiny town. West-VancouverFor ten years our kids went to the same small private school, where there were at most 80 kids per grade. Over the years, you and I sat across from each other during tons of parent/teacher meetings and numerous class mom meetings, attended seasonal school plays and concerts together, and ran into each other at the local shopping mall, grocery store, and 7-eleven.  Our kids played soccer and tennis  and softball together, and learned to swim at the same pool. Our families still frequent the same sports facilities in West Van and ski at the same mountains.

So why can’t you just say hello?

Is something wrong with your eyesight?
Do you lack peripheral vision?
Is there a recent medical abnormality that prevents you from smiling?
Has your long-term memory been dramatically affected lately?

Look, you don’t need to worry about me – I don’t want to be your BFF. I don’t want to be invited to your parties. I don’t want to go on vacation with you to Whistler or Maui. I especially don’t want to steal your husband. Absolutely not! And  I don’t even want my children to date your children.

But I would kinda like to feel like I exist, like I am visible.

So would it kill you to meet my eye occasionally, and smile or say hi, especially when I’ve said hi to you so, so so many times in the past before?

Really?!

Are we there yet?

Aren’t you finished yet?

Words that my children have said to me many, many times.

Words that have driven me crazy many, many times.

And now, words that my dear, darling husband Captain Dumb Dumb has said to me every single day for the past several weeks.

the Captain and I, courtesy iclipart.com

the Captain and I, courtesy iclipart.com

I guess three writers’ conferences in four weeks will do that. Plus the prep beforehand to perfect the pitch and polish the synopsis and rework  the first three chapters. Plus the mad scramble afterwards to incorporate all the words of wisdom and sage advice into the query letter and the synopsis and the first three pages and the whole bloody manuscript.

cartoon courtesy iclipart.com

cartoon courtesy iclipart.com

Then there’s the due diligence to ensure that even if so-and-so and such-and-such loved my pitch, are they really legitimate? I mean, are they really somebody I want to get in bed with? – metaphorically speaking of course. So hours and hours on-line being nosy (so tough for me to do) and hours and hours reading books championed, books trending and  books newly signed. And who should I get to proof-read my work in the meantime – my freelance editor? Captain Dumb Dumb? My mother? (actually all three, although I didn’t get much more than a couple of grunts out of Captain Dumb Dumb)

Oh yeah, and did I mention that I recently became involved with the most amazing not-for profit organization? It’s called the Compassionate Eye Foundation and these folks do some pretty incredible work all over the globe. It really is a creative community for change – be sure to check it out. Of course there’s been a significant learning curve for me – interesting and fascinating and of course, more time-consuming than originally anticipated.

So I emerged just in time to take a breath a couple of days ago and…decorate the tree and the house for Christmas,

courtesy iclipart

courtesy iclipart.com

BoxingDay

courtesy iclipart.com

buy Christmas presents for everyone (including myself – not quite, but I did have to provide a very, very detailed list complete with pictures, prices and store information), mail boxes of Christmas presents to family in Ontario before rates go up (failed there – spent big bucks but don’t tell Captain Dumb Dumb), continue to de-clutter and pack and organize all belongings of our family in case someone one day actually does buy our house (yes our house is for sale, and has been for a couple a few several months now, but it’s not driving me crazy at all). Forget about Christmas cards this year – everyone can read my blog and/or check out my Facebook page. Plus it’s better for the environment to do everything on-line. As for Christmas baking, I’m just doing my family a favour and keeping them healthy – who needs all that sugar anyway? (although I really hope my daughter makes our family’s secret recipe for chocolate fudge when she gets home – I have a humongous craving!)

So hopefully everyone in my family will be happy, more or less…except Captain Dumb Dumb of course. You see, lately I’ve been a little too busy to have dinner on the table the second he steps in the door, a little too swamped to ensure that each and every morning he has sufficient quantities of fresh fruit available for his every whim, and sadly, I haven’t spent hours on the phone with our incredible travel agent organizing our fall 2014 trip of a lifetime. Nope, he had to send her an email all by himself – no people to do it for him. Poor dear, he really is hard-done-by.

courtesy iclipart.com

courtesy iclipart.com

Good thing he has Franklinstein!IMG_0007

Really!

It’s Tough Being Beautiful…

especially if you’re my daughter, the Weird One.532988_10151643727150290_918872487_nLet me give you a recent example.

Just before dropping my daughter off at university in the UK, we spent a few nights in a tiny room at a chic boutique hotel, located in the exclusive Mayfair area of London. 554806_241007492704389_352912053_nOn our last morning, she woke up rather early – at 4:30 am –  but was kind enough to wait until 7 am to wake me, although 8 am would have been kinder! She was eager to get under way, but this Terrible Awful Mother was lethargic and exhausted. You see, the night before (and the night before, etc.), I’d had to resort to reading in the bathroom, because the bedside light was too bright for the Weird One. As was the reading light on the side of my bed. As was the penlight I brought with me. So, it was either the bathroom or the hall, and the hall was a rather dark and scary place for this Terrible Awful Mother to be sitting on the floor and reading in the middle of the night. But, as lovely as the bathroom was, it was a wee bit cold and cramped  –  for some reason, the toilet is just not a comfortable perch for late night reading.

Anyway, by 7 am the Weird One was in desperate need of croissant and tea, so she ventured off all by herself, for the very first time. When she returned, roughly thirty minutes later, she marched into the room, slammed the door and announced in an extremely grumpy tone of voice,

“Mom, the worst thing just happened to me and I’m so disgusted!”

“What, darling ???!”

“Mom, some old guy just asked me if I was single? I didn’t think Britain was full of weird old men!”

Senior3

courtesy iclipart.com

 

“Oh, really?” what to say?!

“Yes! First of all, it’s way too early in the morning for a stranger to talk to me on the street.”

“Well dear, he was probably just on his way to work.”

“Then Mom, it was so creepy ’cause he was so old – he must’ve been at least 30!”

At least 30 – trying very hard not to laugh, and to actually take her seriously, I asked the Weird One what he said, exactly.

“Well, he told me I was the most beautiful woman he had ever seen and then he asked me if I was single.”  And yes folks, she was mad. Livid, in fact! “But Mom, it was early in the morning, and I had no make-up on and he was really, really old!!!”

“I see. You know, most girls (like me) would take that as a complement.”

“Oh, gross, Mom!  It was way too early in the morning and 30 is just way too old for me!”

On the bright side, I guess I don’t have to worry about her having daddy issues or bringing home older men. For now, anyway.

Really!

Captain Dumb Dumb Strikes Again

My dear darling husband is at it again –  he is showing the world, well me at least, just how totally awesome he really is. I swear, he is defining a whole new level of coolness that nobody knew existed before!

the Captain and I, courtesy iclipart.com

the Captain and I, courtesy iclipart.com

One of the extremely challenging and difficult chores he performs all by himself is ordering wine from Everything Wine, which is then delivered to our home. (Note that none of his people are supposed to help him.) I suspect that we are one of their best customers, since whenever I get involved, generally each and every time after  Captain Dumb Dumb places an order, the folks who work there are incredibly nice and helpful. And yes, it is a Canadian company afterall.logo-clean

This past weekend we had a wine emergency – our wine cellar was at an all time low, containing only about 50 bottles or so. I blame the hot sunny weather and Franklinstein – he’s been way too happy and mellow lately. 

let sleeping dogs lie - even when they're lying on MY sofa.

let sleeping dogs lie, even when they’re lying on MY sofa and MY velvet pillow

Anyways, after the usual  questions (Rita, what’s the website we order the wine from? Rita, what’s our password? Rita?!),  Captain Dumb Dumb finally managed to purchase a gazillion cases of wine. And they were delivered the next day without any interference action required from yours truly. A first!

Then came the totally exciting part:

Rita, Rita, guess what I did? What now darling?

I ordered wine from Brangelina! What? Are you kidding? I didn’t even think you knew who “they” were?

Well, yeah, kind of… I just purchased this Miraval rose wine on Everything Wine‘s website that’s rated 90 points  – turns out Brad and Angelina made it on their estate in the South of France. Oh, you mean you bought some of those 6,000 bottles of their wine which sold out in 5 hours. (according to Vanity Fair) Wow, I’m impressed darling!

courtesy Vancouver Sun

courtesy Vancouver Sun

Yeah, whatever. It’s cool because  in 1979 Chateau Miraval was the recording studio where Pink Floyd recorded part of their album,The Wall. And now we have wine from there! Very exciting dear. (snore). TheWallImmersion

But then I did a little research – turns out that Sting and Sade and The Gypsy Kings also used the studio to record their music. Okay, so that is cool! But wait a minute – does that mean we can’t drink the wine now? Do we have to save it for special occasions or for when we have people over? The only problem is that the last time we had people over who weren’t work related was during the last Ice Age. Guess I’ll have to savour every single drop. And hide a dozen or so bottles where no one but me will find them, which shouldn’t be hard because not one person in my family is ever able to find anything on their own.2013_EWPOD_MiravalSOLDOUT_July25They don’t call me the Terrible Awful Mother for nothing. Really!

I Can Ruin Your Life Too…

After all, as the Terrible Awful Mother that’s what I like to do. in fact, I thrive on ruining other people’s lives, especially the lives of my family members.

courtesy iclipart.com

courtesy iclipart.com

Take my husband, the Original Obnoxious One. His life was almost too easy to ruin – it simply requires leaving my car parked in the driveway so that when he comes home from work he can’t park his Precious in the garage, or neglecting to put my cell phone on silent at bedtime so it chimes away all night long. As I said, too easy.

My son, the Obnoxious One required a slightly more advanced approach: I had to poison him. DSC02374We haven’t been able to sort out his recent medical disasters, but we are working on it. After several doctor visits, numerous tests, and various medications, we still don’t know what’s wrong with him, but we do know that gluten is a trigger. After consuming gluten he immediately develops flu-like symptoms, severe stomach cramps, and passes blood in his stool. So we’ve spent absolute fortune on gluten-free products at Whole Foods – not just bread and cereal, but soy sauce and salad dressing and granola bars and crackers/crisps and humus and more…much more. Imagine my shock the other evening after preparing what I thought was a gluten-free meal, of chicken breasts  poached in broth and wine with roasted rosemary potatoes and salad. Well, turns out that I used dijon mustard to marinate the chicken and the mustard contained vinegar. I also used a seasoning salt on the chicken, which after reading the teeny tiny print, we discovered contained gluten. The Obnoxious One felt sick an hour after dinner, went to work the next morning but had to come home at lunch since he felt so so so badly.

I didn’t want to ruin my baby,Franklinstein’s life, but he’s such a good sensitive boy that a stern look will make him quiver, and a harsh word will cause him to cower. West Vancouver-20120615-00375Despite frequent hosings, the weeks of splashing through mud puddles,and swimming in the ocean took their toll; he reaked! Yesterday I made Obnoxious One bathe him, a cruel and mean procedure for labs, but totally necessary from time to time. I think Franklinstein has forgiven me by now, but he stills throws baleful glance at me every now and then when he thinks I’m not looking at him.

Now I really wouldn’t want to leave out my daughter, the Weird One – no need for her to feel unloved. IMG_1956She recently informed me that I had ruined her life by purchasing Netflix. In fact, I purchased Netflix so I could watch the amazing Kevin Spacey in House of Cards. The Weird One, though, is hooked on the recent 90210, Summer Heights High and rather concerned that she hasn’t even gotten to the new Arrested Development! She was most upset that she missed a couple of parties because she was too enthralled with the machinations of Naomi and Liam and Adrianna and Annie.Oh, the drama. With an almost straight face, she told me:

Mom, it’s all your fault! You’ve ruined my life! If you hadn’t purchased Netflix I would be going to my friend’s party right now, but I can’t cuz I have to watch my show.

When I rolled my eyes and stared at her, her mouth twitched and her eyes twinkled. Nevertheless the Weird One tried ever so hard to look seriously angry.

So there you go…I’ve succeeding in ruining the lives of each and every member of my immediate family. Who’s next? Really?!

So how was your weekend?

Just super…as in super awful.

How often do you an answer the truth when someone asks that question? I mean, who  wants to admit that they had a lousy weekend? But yeah, I did and I’ve had a few actually. But this past one was over the top. Why? Well first of all, it was my daughter’s grad weekend, as in commencement. So that should be blissfully wonderful and charmingly emotional, right?

courtesy iclipart.com

courtesy iclipart.com

Well that would be totally wrong.

First of all my daughter, the Demon Child, didn’t want to go, because she is one of almost 400 kids in her grade, of which she knows maybe a dozen; afterall, she’s only attended this particular high school for 2 years. But her friends guilted her into going, which of course meant my husband, the Original Obnoxious One, my son the Obnoxious One, and myself all had to go. At 10am on a Sunday morning across the Lions Gate Bridge through downtown to the Orpheum Theatre. Oh joy.

So of course I expected both of my children to be home reasonably early Saturday night so that they would not be over-tired Sunday morning. How silly of me – I really should know better by now. I stayed up until both of my little darlings were home safe and sound, which  meant that the three of us were very tired and very grumpy on Sunday.

In fact, the Demon Child was so tired Sunday morning that she slept in and missed her ride. Of course she had to come and wake me up and yell at me for ten minutes demanding I drive her there right away. While trying to decide how I could get her downtown and then back home to change and then head back over the bridge with the rest of my family. I went into her bedroom to discuss logistics, when low and behold, I spotted the horrendous, absolutely awful….TATTOO! She got a flippin’ tattoo on her left shoulder, and not a tiny itty bitty one,  but a big huge honkin’ one! One with a bunch of words – I was so so so angry that I couldn’t even read it! Yeah, I’m not a fan of tattoos, especially for teenagers who have plenty of time to change their mind in years to come.(My son succumbed to one a couple years ago. See Tattoo Schmatto)

Her explanation : Oh Mom, I got that ages ago…which simply wasn’t true because she didn’t have it at her grad banquet 2 weeks before.

Guess what my very calm and understated reaction was:

courtesy iclipart.com

courtesy iclipart.com

And I refused to drive her downtown and suggested she take a taxi, then made my way to the guest bedroom in the basement where I could rant and rave in peace.

courtesy iclipart.com

courtesy iclipart.com

As expected the ceremony was excruciatingly long and rather boring, but nevertheless well organized. After almost four hours, the four of us were desperate to get out of there, as well as desperately hungry and desperately tired. Which meant that we argued non-stop and almost didn’t make it to lunch. But we did and we did survive, until we got home when the situation deteriorated even more.

Because I became the most terrible parent in the world.

After all, I didn’t buy the Demon Child a grad present, even though the Demon Child agreed to forfeit one when she refused to complete Global Ed. (One of the threats/bribes offered – see What do you do when your kid is the most stubborn person.) And after all those flippin’ piercings (numerous ones in her ears, as well as belly button and tongue) and that friggin’ tattoo, I’m not feeling very generous. Besides, she’s taking the summer off to “unwind and destress” before she ventures to university in the UK in September. She’s quite hard done by as you can see.

We didn’t talk for a day or so, and are now on civil speaking terms…barely.

So what can I say except that it was a super awful weekend and I am now officially the Terrible Awful Mother.

courtesy iclipart.com

courtesy iclipart.com

Really!

What do you do when your kid is the most stubborn person on the planet?

My husband, the Original Obnoxious One, and my son, the Obnoxious One, are both extremely stubborn, IMG_0153but my daughter, The Demon Child is in a league all of her own. Ever since she was a baby she has been…well…challenging. She has never believed that no actually applied to her…more that it was suggestion she could take into account.

  • no, don’t put the dirty old toilet plunger on your head

    look at me!

    look at me

  • no, don’t stand up on the paddle boat in the middle of the ocean
  • look at what I can do

    look what I can do

  • no, don’t slurp your spaghetti, especially when you’re in a restaurant

    but it's so yummy this way

    but it’s so yummy this way

  • no, don’t touch the poisonous frog, especially when we’re in a boat-access-only location on the east coast of Costa Rica

    but he's so cute

    but he’s so cute

  • no, don’t take off on your own and try to get back on the ginormous cruise ship without your ID 
  • DSC02362

    Mom, you should be the one answering this

The first objective confirmation of my daughter’s character came when she was in Grade Three. The Head of her school called me in for a meeting to discuss my darling Demon Child. When I mentioned she was rather stubborn, he said:

Mrs. R., your daughter is the most stubborn child I have ever come across in all my thirty years of teaching.

Oooooh really…rats!

I had always longed for a sweet, attentive and malleable little girl I could dress up and take shopping. Never, ever happened and never gonna happen. Some mothers take pride in their daughter’s stubborn nature – not me. I can honestly state that I think stubbornness is an over-rated trait. Yes, as everyone insists, it might help her in the long run…but what about me in the short run?! I always figured my job was to get her through school while the two of us remained in one piece. Sure enough this project has proven to be the most demanding, the most painful, the most ambitious and ultimately, hopefully, the most rewarding one ever I have undertaken.

I’ll let you know how rewarded I feel – next year!

By the way, there is a reason that boarding schools exist — so that mothers and thirteen  old daughters can one day have a reasonable relationship. But that’s another story…

Fast forward to now that my darling angel…

yes my wings are broken and my halo fell off, but so what?

yes my wings are broken and my halo fell off, but so what?

has just turned eighteen.

As I mentioned in a prior post, she went to Nicaragua on a school class trip for three weeks in March. Unfortunately the Demon Child did not enjoy the experience  – to put it mildly – because of warring personalities, challenging conditions, but especially the hypocrisy of rich white kids performing “make work” projects in a third world country. She decided the class was beyond stupid so she tried to drop it…at the beginning of April with only two and one-half months left of school. Heck, the last two and a half months of her high school experience! Of course I told her to suck it up and finish the course…her dad, her brother and her teacher all gave her the same advice. Finishing it meant cranking out a couple of  reports, showing up to class occasionally  and checking in with her teacher from time to time. Could she please do that? – absolutely NOT, apparently.

courtesy iclipart.com

courtesy iclipart.com

So, we had a couple of disagreements followed by several all-and-out wars battles fights. We met with her guidance teacher who also encouraged her finish the course; however, when he confirmed that she didn’t actually require it to graduate from Grade 12 (she has enough credits without) and the university of her choice doesn’t require it…it was game over. She politely thanked him for his time, and then told me there was absolutely, positively, no way she was ever going to that class again or completing any reports for it.

I tired to reason with her…not a chance

I threatened her…I’m not proud

I tried to bribe her….yeah I know, I’m such a great mother

But in the end I had to stop because I still have to live with her until September when she goes off to university far, far away. then I can do my happy dance. In the meantime, I’m the one that has to suck it up. I’m the one that has to pick my battles. And I’m the one who has to survive in one piece.

courtesy iclipart.com

courtesy iclipart.com

Really!