I have come to the conclusion that I have "those" kids. You know the kind. You can teach them everything; manners, courtesy, respect... and yet, they are smart enough to have a mind of their own and will ALWAYS say something to brand me as a horrible mother. The clincher is, that it's always in public. WHY? Why, my dear children, do you need to point the ugly "bad mom" finger where everyone can see??
Not that I was up for the Mother of the Year award or anything. In fact, I don't think I was nominated, or considered, or even thought of. Anyone within listening distance of my "Dude, you are in BIG trouble" mom-voice will know that me and the perfect idea of mothering don't get along.
Normally, my boys and I are good pals. I have a pretty good rapport going with my kids. They prefer to talk things through to any other form of punishment. I don't mind chatting on an adult level because when it comes to punishment, I admit, I can woos out pretty quick. However, I am guilty of some very bad parenting. For example, growing up, I'd go to church, hear the kids throwing monstrous temper tantrums in the pews and think to myself "my kid will be different."
Somebody smack me.
No kid is going to be different. Granted, my boys are well behaved, they are smart and they know what is good and what is bad. In my house there are consequences. SO... when I go to my BFF's house to pick up my kids (where they've been frolicking for the past two hours after school) I kind of expect to hear that they had a grand old time. What I got was a quick run down that both my boys had blown it big time, IN PUBLIC mind you, over a wii controller. Not only did they shout at each other, it came to blows. Great. Then, if that weren't mortifying enough, after being kicked off the wii, they continued to bicker about whose fault it was for being punished. More blows ensued. Fan-freaking-tastic.
As they gathered their junk and made eye contact with me, by golly they KNEW I was pissed and they were in deep doo doo trouble. They walked, very subdued, to the car where my very well trained dog was waiting. My BFF got double duty of crap from my family. Miss Doggie Pants hopped out, pooped a load of runny bleep on her lawn, walked to her sidewalk and peed on the cement. Done with her biz, she got back into the car looking all innocent like "gosh mom, aren't I a good doggie?"
Shoot me. Please.
I spent a lot of time apologizing and then came to this realization: At any given point in my life I will have "that" kid and "that" dog. Whether it is premeditated is another thing, but regardless of how much I teach, threaten, parent or whatever you want to brand it, they will act on their own god-given right to make a good or bad decision.
After I rescue myself from the bottom of my mortification pit, I'll let you know if I have come to grips with this magical revelation. However, as a creator of characters in my novels, I now know why I can't control them sometimes. Sometimes a person will make a choice and there isn't a darn thing I can do about it. I should know. My youngest son just intentionally stuffed a half bag of Skittles deep into my leather couch so he can have a treat for later.
Life. It is the fodder for the finer points of writing.