I haven't exactly made it a secret that parenting - always a rough road - has taken an unexpected detour OFF road lately. My three kids still at home (aka the "little" kids) seem to have made maps of their own including some major potholes, dips, and a bunch of dirt roads. And I don't have a four-wheel drive anymore.
I think Kam's has a street or two that have "DANGER ROAD CLOSED AHEAD" on his map. And he's all into the adventure of finding out what happens when you make mommie drive down them at high speeds.
See, since the "big" kids have all moved out, I have no more buffer between myself and the remaining children of the corn sleeping under my roof. No one is on my side (I'm not allowed to have one anymore). My older kids were pretty darned respectful. I only had to say "no" a few times for them to get it. They didn't ask, "whhhhyyyy?????" every time I asked them to do something, or just flat out ignore any words coming out of my mouth. Even when spoken directly into his or her ear.
Seriously, they were pretty decent kids.
As they grew up, they helped the smaller fry stay on track. When Klaryssia, Kobi, or Kameron would question me incessently (and I'm talking twenty-plus times), a larger kid like Kesley, Elesha, Kris or Kami, would set them straight. You don't talk to Mom like that. There are consequences, come on, let's go play basketball in your room. .
My royal guard has abandoned me. I am on my own. Why is this just sinking in, you ask? After all, the last big kid left in August. Yeah, well I'm a bit of a slow study. At some level, I think I figured ALL my children - since they were raised in the same house, with the same rules - would catch on, fall under my spell, and magically behave like reasonable people. Eventually.
I've been thrown back into parenting 101. Maybe I'm not even in a 100 level course yet. Maybe this is a 60 or an 80. Or maybe this is a graduate level deal. Maybe this is God's Phd. course in parenting. . .taking me to the upper-echelon of moms. . .
Nah. This is either remedial parenting or purgatory. Maybe the Catholics are right, after all.
Even as I type this, at o-dark-thirty in the a.m., Klaryssia has come out at least four times to tell me the weather report for the day (I don't care), show me what she's wearing (ditto), to tell me she's brushed her teeth (check), and to explain to me her schedule for the day (again); Kameron (up since 5:20 am) is explaining to everyone that he does NOT have a doctor's appointment (he does), telling Klaryssia that she needs to take her meds (she already did), and I can hear him taking off the floor vent in the bathroom, probably shoving his clothes for the day down it; Kobi is trying to convince him that he does have an appointment, (pointless, Kobi, you are wasting your words, trust me), asking me how to turn regular instant oatmeal into brown sugar oatmeal, and dragging his wet bedding out to the washer (while asking why "we" haven't washed his wet sheets from yesterday - "we" were working all day, master and haven't had a chance to get to your damp bedding); and the noise is escalating.
These skirmishes occur constantly. If they are up, they are fighting about something. Anything. Everything. Last night it got so bad I wanted to leave the house.
Not an option, though. Failing that, I grabbed a glass of wine and my Ipod, found the loudest playlist I could find, and sang my way through dinner prep. All through it, they kept popping into the kitchen (guess that's because with the blessed music playing, I couldn't hear them yelling, "MOM"). It was awesome, because their little mouths were opening and closing and I couldn't hear a word.
Santana Danced me Through the Night, Grits had me Runnin', and Kenny Chesney reminded me about the sweet Summertime. . .
I know I keep harping on this, but seriously I've been blindsided. I foolishly thought I had a handle on parenting. After all, I ran a home daycare; I raised my own two kids; I fostered countless others - at one point our big house in Colorado had four adults, fifteen children, and almost that many pets. We survived snow storms, power outages (when Kam was on a ventilator), dying chickens, a horse that peed on the front lawn, multiple bus and school schedules, and still found a way to have Kelsey in competitive gymnastics, Kris in basketball and football, and everyone else at their myriad doctors and therapy appointments.
Now here I am, crushed and bewildered by these three.
It doesn't seem right. Somewhere in my brain there must be skills I can use against these heathens. And when I figure out what they are, and my heathens become children again, I will be expecting my Peace Prize.
Or at the very least, a little peace. Which is probably better.
I could use the million bucks, though.