I have a pretty white flag. I keep it in pristine condition . Folded just so, and stored in a place I actually won’t forget where it is.
It’s not used often, perhaps a handful of times–or less. You see, I would rather die trying, than give up before I’ve exhausted every last option. In my opinion, there is always something I haven’t tried–always one more option.
Many moons ago, I learned a great bit of Mommery. That’s what I’ve decided to call it. It’s that delicate balance of trying to please every child at dinner, while ensuring that they have at least one or two healthy options, and all kinds of happiness prevailed. I used all kinds of Mommery to get them to eat things, but I would never call it healthy—that would be a guaranteed upturned nose, and a few eews. Instead, I made shapes out of their food, hid ingredients in items they never guessed were there, and dinner was fun–um yeah, that’s what I’m sticking with–fun.
Entertainment was another skill of Mommery. How does one please two boys who are 5 years apart, and one little girl who believes boys, and all that they are, are smelly and dirty? She more than likely worded her description in her unique way—such as—they have an awful stench and they’re nasty.
Fishing challenged Mommery, The Little Missy would dangle a pole over the edge every now and then, which would create a temporary truce. However, we quit fishing as a family due to my anxiety over one of them falling in the water, and my husband found the joy of fishing sucked right out of him. One can only bait so many hooks in a minute, while trying to un-snag another’s line. Oh–and there is the one who couldn’t sit still, and the complaints over the life vests.
Visits to the library required tons of Mommery–one of them would gather her monstrous stack of books in a matter of minutes, one would fidget around and complain because libraries are boring–and he had to be quiet, and the third child could spend the entire day, leaving with some CD’s and several books. To this day, as much as a couple of us love books, we won’t go to a bookstore or the library with our oldest son if we have plans for the rest of the day.
Board games had to be appropriate for a wide range of ages, keeping all engaged. Yep, Mommery.
Small hikes were minimally pleasant, and trips to the park weren’t all that bad. Swimming was usually a mutually acceptable activity, and the weirdest of all weird things—going to museums, where they were forced to be quiet (my rules), fascinated each and every one of them. Go figure.
The predicament I’m now facing is of my own doing, and I’m quite aware that it must end.
I bend over backwards in order to make everyone around me happy and comfortable, but it has finally reached a point that I don’t even know who I am, or what I want.
I have created adult varmints I don’t recognize. The Vampire in the Basement, and The Bat Upstairs. Oh. My. How can two boys raised by the same parents be so far apart? Not just in years, but in their choices of everything–down to the choice of restaurants they will, or will not enter—agreement can be reached on the same cuisine, but each with their own preferred restaurant—no compromise to be made. The only thing they have in common is that they like to stay up all night and sleep all day.
Freakin’ eye roll.
Each day I attempt to draw upon my Mommery skills to use against my adult children, but Mommery doesn’t work after they reach a certain age. I must find new forms of trickery, being that they have been out on their own, and boomeranged back…they’re onto Mommery.
My strategy? Is to make this an unpleasant environment in which to live. To say what I’m really thinking instead of smiling and moving along. Not my circus, not my monkeys–remember? Maybe it’s time to be the ringmaster.
When I start to think of running away, disappearing, floating off, taking a vacation from my mind….I’m asking for trouble, and lately I’ve been charting my route, and choosing the type of craft I will be using for my escape. (just so you know, I’m not depressed–just stinkin’ frustrated)
The flag will be staying in it’s designated place for now, but I have to come up with some new Mommery which is age appropriate. Gah! Who knew that a mom must continue to resort to trickery to keep peace among the masses?
and for the record, my kids are my love, my heart, my everything. Two -thirds of them are bugging the crap out of me at the moment, because they have learned more things they can’t agree upon, and I’m done with pleasing everyone