That’s not true. But if you in any way interact with my children, please help me keep this story alive. I’m begging you.
My two youngest children being hopped up on sugar plus sheer excitement-induced delirium makes for an interesting weekend, to say the least. Little A and Little B started out with the candy fest Friday at school, and by the time I got home, they’d devoured every last bit of the “goodie” bags that came home with them. I’d already agreed to letting Tween C have a friend sleepover Friday night when I discovered the problem, and it was too late to change plans. So, an eleven year old girl I’d never met before bore witness to th utter chaos that embodied our home Friday night. She looked at Tween C halfway through dinner (pizza, of course) and mouthed silently: OH MY GOD! She might have actually said the words, now that I think about it. It’s not like anyone would have heard her, under the circumstances.
Saturday they played outside most of the day, which was pretty uneventful. The closer it got to Halloween, though, the more things began to change.
Sunday morning, at church, Little B sat very close to the Children’s Minister during the children’s sermon, and his every utterance (and there were many) was broadcast to the entire congregation. The poor Youth Minister could barely get a word in edgewise. The congregation giggled and thought it was cute. The Youth Minister was visibly irritated, as I would have been also, and I felt terrible for her. We went home, ate lunch, took a 2 hour nap, and then prepared to go Trick or Treating at a friend’s home, where we go every year. Prior to going Trick or Treating, we eat and visit for a bit as the kids play. During these “Pre-Game” activities, and after numerous instances of my repeating “Little B, don’t do that” or “Little A, don’t touch that”, “Little B, quit shaking that tree!” and “Little A, stop touching people’s babies!” I’d nearly had it. In fact, I was about to go inside to tell Zohrhubby that he had to come and watch them before I sustained an aneurysm, when Little B began pulling handfuls of leaves off the tree in the frontyard by sliding his cupped hand down the branches. “Little B! I said DO NOT TOUCH THE TREE!” He looked at me, reached his hand up, and did the exact same thing again. I came off the porch to go and get him, when I heard someone say behind me: “UGH! THAT’S A BAD KID.”
To make matters worse, he would not stay still enough for me to grab him, and I had to chase him, without success, for several minutes in the full view of everyone who’d just heard what was said.
Finally, I gave up, went inside, and told Zohrhubby to go out and take the care of the kids or we would just go home. I got emotional and overwhelmed, so I snuck off to the back to try to calm down. Once we actually got moving, they were fine. I don’t know why the comment about him being a “bad kid” upset me so much. It’s not like I don’t say my kids are bad all the time. It’s not like I’ve never been embarrassed by Little B’s behavior before, nor do I think that will be the last time. But there was something about seeing first-hand how frustrated other adults get with Little B that upset me quite a bit. His days must be filled with so much tension and sadness. Imagine how frustrating it must be to deal with him every day when I’m not around to corral him. And I bet that there’s a lot of hatefulness that he encounters as a result of that. After all, he frustrates the hell out of me, and I gave birth to him! All these other people have no reason to look past the annoying and irritating and sometimes downright defiant behavior to see the little boy underneath it all.
On top of all that, this morning Little B got sent to the Principal’s office after getting in trouble in P.E. class. Rather than have one of us go to school to spank him (again), she went ahead and paddled them after calling to ask my permission. Of course, I gave it to her, on the phone and in writing. I feel like he is simply not yet mature enough to suppress some of his impulsive behavior, and other times acts defiantly, as many children do. I regret that’s he’s a square peg that’s not able to fit into a round hole, and causes so much frustration at school, at church, and in public. But damn it–he’s only 5! He’s a sweet kid, and he doesn’t deserve to be made to feel bad all the time. I will try my hardest to stop being so impatient and demanding about things that aren’t important. He will feel loved at home. He will not be a disappointment at home like he must feel like he is at school and other social situations.
I think we’ll stay home a lot more often until things get better.
And we’ll go ahead and start telling them now that Halloween’s been cancelled next year.